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Updated 8/6/05 Don is gone


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Oh Peggy!!!! I am such shock! Don was such a fighter. Iam sooooo sorry for your loss. I will pray for you and Mike to find strength in the up coming days! You both are in my heart and prayers!!!



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. . . Perhaps the only peace here is that you knew Don would not want the kind of life the doctors were predicting.

I believe with all my heart - all the way down to my inner self as far as I can go, that God knew Don would not tolerate a long drawn out death. Trish is so right - that is the only peace I have with this. It was so incredibly unexpected. Don never expected to not walk out of that hospital. He had asked me to buy a stool for the shower, just in case he needed it when he got home.

I don't have but a few minutes to write to all of you and I don't have time to answer all the PMs, but I have read them all, and will write to each one of you at a later time. I am touched by your love.

Don's brother, sister and myself were with him when he died. Mike could not do it. He had his friends at his side, though. Don never had even a twinge of pain or discomfort. He was sedated, but not so much that he could not respond, so he was able to squeeze hands and give thumbs up that everything was ok, even though he only opened his eyes one time. He always knew every time I was there, which was most of the time.

He was heavily sedated the last couple of hours and they had paralyzed him with some kind of medication to try to keep him from working so hard to breathe to see if his lungs would rebound. Even with that, about one hour before he died, and before they took him even deeper into sedation, he responded to me when I told him I loved him, that Mike and I would be ok, and it was ok to go, he squeezed my hand. The doctors and nurses were amazed, but it was a firm and definite squeeze. He was almost constantly surrounded by 5 or 6 doctors and several nurses continually trying everything avaible to bring him around to recovery. I have never seen such a dedicated effort.

I also want you to know, just so you have this for your information, that cancer did not do this, it was the chemo. Sometimes, but rarely, chemotherapy attacks the tiny air sac cells called alveoli and simply destroys them. That's why his good lung, his right lung, was so stiff when they did the surgery. That's also why he couldn't breathe and the ventilator didn't help. The lungs were so stiff that the oxygen couldn't get through to the blood cells.

I doubt that any of you will ever know the depth of my love and compassion for everyone in this close family. I've told you things and shared things that I haven't even shared with my family or close friends. I've done it right here on a public forum because I knew that anything I could share could possibly be helpful to another suffering patient or caregiver. I hope that has been the case.

I don't know how I am going to get through the next few days, but I have lots of family and friends at my side. In my prayers to our Heavenly Father, I have asked that He hold me up because I can't hold me up. My sister from Georgia will be here tonight and my brother is flying in from California. I so much wish my mom and dad were alive so I could cry on their shoulders.

I have a beautiful service planned for Don for Wednesday. There will be a lot of people there from where he worked, and two of his associates are going to speak. I've been told that my entire law firm may close down to attend. I have never felt so honored.

Don was a Vietnam veteran, was extremely patriotic, and will receive military honors. He was red, white and blue from head to toe, and the theme of the flowers are red, white and blue with American flags. His obituary will be in Sunday's paper, and I will post it under Obituaries tomorrow.

I am collecting some pictures, and some time after the funeral, I will post some pictures of him. I am so proud to show him off to the world and tell them that he was the strongest, bravest and best man I've ever known in my life. I am going to be lost without him.

Love to all,


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okay, honey.

For the first time, the tears are rolling. Your Don was a very good guy. What a guy! I am so glad that you all were there for him and each other in the end. And that he knew that you were there. And that he didn't suffer. I appreciate fully that he wouldn't have wanted to be disabled in any way.

I can imagine fully that you will be surrounded physically by those who love you best. Just know that we will all be with you at the service holding you up. Already, you know that here is where your second family resides. We will help you through all of this, Peggy. You have helped so many of us.

God, lay His sweet hand on you and carry you through.

love, Cindi o'h

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What an honor to be your friend, and Don's.

What a beautiful, honest, loving post.

What a sad sad sad day and yet I am so glad to imagine Don entering Glory.

Brian and I are sending all pssible love, support and shoulders to cry/lean on.

Peggy we love you so much, you ahve helped us non stop since we came here and we want you to know that you are the primary focus of our prayers and thoughts.

We have unmeasurable respect for Don.

We are hugging Mike

and are reaching out to you.

Love and prayers and gratitude

Pat and Brian

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I am so sorry to hear this. You'll make it -- you have incredible strength that you've shown over and over again here.

Thanks to that wonderful man for his service to our country, and to you and the rest of your family for sharing part of your lives with us.

God bless you all.


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I just logged on for the first time today, and I can't believe this all happened so quickly. But, you can be assured that you were his best advocate through this journey and I admire you for everything you did for Don and the support you lend all of us at the same time. May your Don rest in peace.


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He had a wonderful passing. With his family by his side and you holding his hand, and that sqeeze.. Oh my...I don't think I know anybody who was that loving and brave. If he could have, he probably would have given you a thumbs up.

His love and spirit will guide you through this Peggy. He will be right by your side every inch of the way. I know you will feel his presence. His peaceful, loving presence. He is so at peace and feeling so free.

I wish I was closer so I could attend. I know it will be beautiful rememberance, with tender, loving words spoken about his brave soul.

Peggy, the love you had for each other was immense and so special bonded by respect. His spirit will always live on in you, as you journey without him at your side.

He will wait for you and your souls will be bonded through-out eternity.

Peace my friend, many prayers are sent for your continued strength.

I have a candle lit for Don, but I will light a new one on Wednesday in his honor to celebrate his life.


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