This one…wow. So Erik has been a part of the LTBM family for several years, as a friend, as a participant in our events, as an advocate for what we do. I met him in January of 2013 when he started working with my husband – he became a very important part of our lives. He had already battled colon cancer and was in remission, doing well.
His cancer returned, and in the midst of his fight, Erik and his wife Courtney were blessed with a baby boy, Grady. Now at just one year of age, Grady doesn’t know what his dad is going through each day, but Erik is doing everything in his power to make sure Grady knows how much he loves him.
One Friday, we spent some time at a local Hallmark store selecting birthday cards for Grady, now through age 22. A quilt has been made from Erik’s clothes that tell about all of his favorite things, from baseball to fishing, Zac Brown Band to wake boarding, his jobs to The Red Hot Chili Peppers. Grady will soon be cuddling with a teddy bear made from Erik’s board shorts and when he gets a little older, he will be able to wear a necklace with his dad’s thumbprint, the message on the back reads “Hey Dude” – just what Erik says every time he lays eyes on his pride & joy.
For the future…a wallet will be made for Grady from Erik’s baseball glove, this will be a gift for when he gets his drivers license. Erik has perfected a pancake recipe because as he said, “every dad should know how to make pancakes” – Grady will receive a cutting board with Erik’s pancake recipe engraved on it when he becomes a dad. And, of course, letters from Erik’s friends and family will be gathered and bound so that Grady can always have a way to learn about his dad.
Erik passed away on November 15, 2016. Please keep Courtney, & Grady in your prayers.