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Pennies From Heaven

September 19, 2012

Today is a tough day. One of the toughest that I’ve had in a really long time. This morning our family’s Pastor and friend passed away. He has been my Pastor for 28 years. Truthfully most of what I know about God, church and being a Christian I learned from him and my church family.  He was like a second father to me. He baptized me when I was 13. He married The Husband and I 10 years ago. He married my sister and her husband. He conducted the memorial services for my grandma and grandpa. He supported me and the girls when The Husband was deployed. He was at the hospital with us last year when my dad had a heart attack.  He was there for countless fun memories, and silly moments throughout my life. He is going to be missed terribly.


I am eternally grateful that he and his family are a part of my life. I am grateful that he didn’t suffer for very long. As horrible and evil cancer can be, he was shown some bit of mercy by being taken so quickly from all of us.


I picked up the girls from school today and told them that Harvey had passed away this morning. They were sad for a few seconds and then they went back to be 7 and 5. They had been asking to walk up to 7-11 for Sluprees for a couple days now. Today I told them we’d go.  So we went. As we were walking home, Sluprees in hand, the Big One stopped to pick up a penny in the parking lot. I told her that my mom and grandma always told me that when I found a penny on the ground it meant someone in Heaven was thinking about me.


The Big One asked what I meant. So I told her again and added “so maybe someone up in Heaven is thinking about us today.”  To which the Big One said, “Someone like Harvey maybe is thinking of us.”  Oh how it broke my heart. I said maybe and did my best to not break down in the parking lot.


I don’t know why cancer still happens. I don’t understand how great people can be taken from this earth so easily, but I do know that my faith tells me that someday we will be reunited. Whether that penny was a gift from above or not, I will take comfort tonight knowing that Harvey and my grandparents and countless others are celebrating his arrival in Heaven tonight.


Please pray for my church family as we journey into an unknown future. And of course, continue your prayers for Harvey’s family to find peace, strength and comfort in the coming days.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. Debi Haack permalink
    September 20, 2012 7:34 am

    I heard the news from my mom yesterday….praying for Palisades and for the Throop family. He was a big part of my life, too, having been my pastor from the time I was 14 to the time I left San Diego in 1998. He married Aaron and I, christened Sara, was part of our Easter and Christmas gatherings at my parents home, and officiating my dad, grandpa, and grandma’s services. He will be greatly missed by all that knew him.

  2. September 20, 2012 7:38 am

    thank you Joyce. Yesterday was a very rough day. I love how easily kids accept what happens in life and move on. We have been worried about how to tell Branson, maybe it won’t be as difficult as we think.
    we will all get through this and will find support and peace in our memories of Harvey. Our prayers for the Throop family will also bring us comfort and closure.
    I will always treasure dinners with Harvey at youth club through two generations of kids. And the fact that he would get on a bus and take all you wild, loud and crazy kids on that long trip to Estes Park always amazed me. He will be greatly missed by so many.
    Rest in Peace Harvey.

  3. Laura Cox permalink
    September 20, 2012 8:38 am

    I still can’t find the words….. But since you write so well, I’ll be happy to share in yours for now.

  4. Karen permalink
    September 23, 2012 10:21 pm

    Thank you for this, Joyce. Its difficult to describe just how important Harvey has been to all of us. He has been more than a Pastor, more than a friends’ Dad, more than our parents’ friend. I guess the combination of these is more than the whole of any one of them.

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