Losing a loved one is one of the most difficult things we will ever experience in our lives. It is even more difficult when that loved one is our parents. It is the natural progression to lose our parents, but not at the age of 9 like this woman. This story was shared on our Storyblend Facebook Group and it left that gut-wrenching feeling among many of us.
As parents we always want to look out for our children. We do everything we can to protect them within reason. Sometimes it is good for them to make mistakes and learn, but not when their life is at stake. I would take a bullet for my daughter and protect her with every ounce of my being until I take my last breath. This father was like me, he would do anything to save his daughter. He was a true super dad but unfortunately he was lost tragically. This woman lives with these memories every day and feels as though it's her fault because he was trying to rescue her. He saved her, but unfortunately couldn't save himself. If your dad is still alive, pick up a phone and tell him you love him. If you can visit with him, go and give him a huge hug. Many people can't and this tragedy is the last memory this woman has of her dad, her hero.
"It was a super hot July day. My parents decided it would be a great day to take me and my older brother to the river for some family time. I really wanted to cool off in the river; I guess I over estimated my swimming ability. Next thing I remember was being pulled under the water. No matter how hard I kicked and paddled I couldn't stay up. I had just enough time to call out for help.
My dad ran in to help me even though he didn't know how to swim. My mom ran to our truck to call for help. My dad was able to reach me, and help me get close enough to my brother. He was on the riverbank holding out a long stick for me to grab on to.
I remember collapsing when I got on dry land. My legs feeling like jello.
I remember looking around for my Daddy. He wasn't there...
I don't know how much time passed. I don't know the correct sequence of events. They are all jumbled in my head; and they always have been.
I remember EMT's...
I remember divers...
I remember my mom begging them to look where she saw him last...
I remember them telling her they had to start 200 feet down stream and work their way back...
I remember the newspaper article stating he was found just 20 feet from where my brother pulled me ashore.
I know now that even though I was only a few feet from the shore, the bank dropped 25 feet which is why I couldn't ever touch the bottom.
I have to live every day knowing that I caused my father to give the ultimate sacrifice, his life.
He saved me. He will always be my hero. I miss him everyday.
I am 32 years old now. And no matter what I do in my life, I try to make him proud. I know everything that could have been done to prevent this.
My Dad. My Hero."