My children’s last living great-grandparent was their mom’s mom’s mom. She died on December 14th, 2010. She was an extraordinary woman. Let me tell you about her.

But first a little background. The extended family that I grew up with was a family that (1) showed love to each other, (2) showed love for God and (3) had a love for music. Even before Debbie and I were married, I could see this was true for her extended family as well. It was something that helped draw me to Debbie. It was, and still is, a thing of beauty. And this trinity of love stems greatly from the soft, cheerful, uncomplaining spirit shown daily in Debbie’s grandmother.

I have never heard anyone say a negative word about her.


I recall the first time I visited their home that first summer that I dated Debbie. Debbie and I had decided that we would not kiss until right before our wedding. And so it turned out that the first kiss I received from anyone in her family was the gentle kiss on the cheek from her grandmother as we were leaving.


As each of our children were born, Debbie’s grandmother knitted them blankets. They are still treasured. One of them was treasured to the point of near disintegration. But infinitely more valuable to us was the fact that she prayed every day (sometimes twice) for all of us, including all of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren. I look forward to finding out one day all the ways our lives were blessed by these prayers.

But here’s a few we know about right now . . .

Of Debbie’s grandmother’s 19 great-grandchildren, six of them were adopted from four different continents. All of her children and grandchildren are actively serving in their evangelical churches. As far as I know, none of them have experience even a short period of backsliding or rebellion. All of the marriages are strong. Is this not remarkable?

I rejoice daily at the blessing I personally receive for having been married into this family. And I can see behind all of these strong traits the whispered prayers of Connie Eagan.

Debbie’s grandmother was almost 94. At her funeral, they read her testimony; it was full of the Gospel and explained how she came to know Jesus as her Savior. It was wonderful to hear yet another reassurance that she was saved and she is now enjoying new life with her Heavenly Father. I am so glad my kids got to hear it.

The last sentence from her testimony was “and I have never regretted this decision.”