Friday, November 18, 2011


Calvin Lee “Bud” Sherrow, 70, of Hagerstown went home to Heaven on November 16, 2011.  
 He was born January 7, 1941 in Richmond, Indiana to Joseph Sherrow and Betty (Sherrow) Parrett. 

Bud earned his GED and went on to serve in the United States Army.  He served overseas and had fond memories of his time spent in Germany and Korea.  Following his service to his country, he returned to Richmond.  He worked at Kemper Cabinet Company for nearly 38 years, retiring in 2003.

Bud married Judy Hunter Sherrow on October 7, 1967 and welcomed three children into their family.  Bud was a loving husband, father, and grandfather.  He was a loyal brother, uncle, and friend.  Bud was happiest spending time with his family, making memories with his grandchildren, reading, and gardening.

Bud is survived by his children: Jeff (Laura) Sherrow of Hagerstown, Tony Sherrow of Richmond, and Christina (Brad) Johnson of Wilmore, KY;   his nine grandchildren: Ashley Sherrow, Morgan Kincaid, Zackery, Grace, and Lillee Sherrow, Sam, Luke, Caleb and Matthew Johnson.  Also surviving are his siblings: Harriet Clark of Franklin, IN, Charlie Parrett (Carol) of Richmond, and Carl Parrett (Sandy) of Richmond.  He also leaves an aunt, several cousins, nieces, and nephews.    He was preceded in death by his wife, his parents, his stepfather, Ed Parrett; his sisters, Joan Clapp, Carol Simpson, and Brenda Riddle; and his grandsons Dylan Sherrow and Austin Sherrow. 

A celebration of Bud’s life will be held at First United Methodist Church at 318 National Road West in Richmond on Saturday, November 19th at 10:00 am.  In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Gleaners Food Bank at 3737 Waldemere Ave. Indianapolis, IN 46241 or

This is my dad's obituary that will appear in our hometown newspaper.  The words are all accurate and true...but very inadequate.  He was much more than the information contained in those paragraphs.  

I have been thinking about how by "worldly" standards, my dad lived a pretty unremarkable life.  Aside from his military travels, he lived and died in the county where he was born.  He got married to a nice girl, raised three kids, worked at the same job for 38 years...nothing really "exceptional" about his life - in fact, he would seem to be a very ordinary guy.  

However, what most folks don't know is that my dad really was extraordinary.  He and my mom were the most generous people I have ever known.  While they were never wealthy - they always gave as if they were.  Honestly, I can remember my folks giving/loaning money to people my entire life.  My mom was always volunteering my dad to do things - like delivering Christmas gifts/dinner to someone who had none, helping to fix someone's leaky sink who couldn't afford to pay a plumber, restoring an old bicycle to give to a little neighbor girl who didn't have one, driving my grandmother to play bingo with her friends (grin), fixing someone's car or furnace, and he even helped to paint my mother-in-law's home.  My dad's heart was broken when our childhood friend's young son died of SIDS...the only child and apple of his parent's eyes.  They wanted to donate all of his things.  They gathered up his crib, his toys, his clothes...and my dad went to pick them up and deliver them to the donation site.  He told me about how sad he was for the young parents and how difficult it was to see all of the things that this little guy should have used for a long time to come.  

My dad was much more than a blue collar guy from Indiana...he was a care-giver, he was an encourager, he was a story-teller, he was decent, he was loyal, he was a good man, he was the most patient person I have ever known, he was a very attentive grandfather - he really knew his grandchildren, he was amazing.  He was more than just an "ordinary man" - he was my dad.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


My blog has been silent for the past few months.  Not because I lack things to write about, rather there is too much going on in my heart, my mind, my life...words don't come easily.  However, sleep wouldn't come easily tonight...and words seem to.

My dad had a heart attack in June.  I got the phone call that no one wants to receive from my oldest brother in the early hours of the morning.  I packed a bag and made the drive to Indiana.  Ten months after my mom's sudden death, I found myself in another hospital room.  Listening to the sounds of monitors, watching the blinking of lights on machines that were delivering medications, and did my best to take in what was really happening. 

Later that afternoon, I met with my dad's cardiologist.  He shared the ultrasound images of my dad's heart.  It was not good news.  I listened as he gently explained that the damage was severe, that blockages had gone undetected, and then he stopped.  He collected his thoughts and then went on to tell me that my dad's case was very different than any he had seen before.  My dad's heart was severely enlarged - not a normal symptom related to the heart blockages.  The doctor asked if my dad had experienced any traumatic emotional event in the past few months.  I felt my throat tighten and my eyes began to burn...I could feel the tears coming.  I explained that my mom had died earlier that year.  He told me that my dad was probably suffering from Takotsubo Cardiomyopathy or "broken heart syndrome" in addition to the other cardiac issues.  He smiled and said, "Your dad must have really loved your mom."  He mapped out what the next few days would look like...tests to be run, meds to be administered, and questions to be answered.  It was all just the beginning of a long journey.

After a week long hospital stay, my dad was released.  The docs told us that he was gravely ill and would most likely not survive a month.  The next few months would bring a decreased appetite and dramatic weight-loss, the placement of a permanent pacemaker/defibrillator, changes in his diet, and incredible fatigue.  The lack of energy seemed to bother him most.  We determined to take advantage of the time we had with him.  He shared time between his home in Indiana and our house here in Kentucky.  Making lots of memories with his grand kids, having really rich conversations about the past and the future, and just loving one another.  What a tremendous gift God had given us.

Nearly five months later, we find ourselves at another crossroads.  The hospice nurse tells us that he will most likely meet Jesus in just a matter of days now.  I find myself so thankful that his suffering will end and the joy will begin...but, my heart is also filled with sadness.  I will miss him. 

Although I am overwhelmed, I know that God is with me.  He loves me.  He is able to bear my burden.  He will carry me.

"The Lord your God goes with you; 
He will never leave you nor forsake you."  
Deuteronomy 31:6