Posted by: krpooler | December 2, 2010

On the Wings of a Snow White Dove..


After eleven days of hovering between a coma and varying states of awareness, my beloved father was finally called “Home” to his Heavenly reward on Saturday,November 27,2010 at 5:25 AM.

 His funeral was a celebration of his remarkable life. Family and friends traveled from all over to bid their final farewell. He was buried with military honors on Wednesday,December 1,2010. Four white racing pigeons (used in Disney movies) as beautiful and sleek as white doves were released at the front door of the mausoleum we were forced to retreat to for protection from the driving sleet that leashed its fury on us at the burial site.  We gathered close at the front entrance as the birds took flight from their cage. The WHOOSH of their wings carried them upward into white sky as the silent crowd gasped in unison at the sheer beauty of the launch. We stared upward, in awe, as  the pellets of sleet grazed our tear-stained faces. They circled the sky above us several times until their internal GPS  directed their path back home. The Chinese believe that these birds take the soul of the departed to Heaven. And so do we..

You see, we really wanted to find white doves, symbols of peace and the Holy Spirit. On Thanksgiving Day, my brother, Tom, took a trip to our nearby family cottage on Keuka Lake. As he descended the stairs leading down to the beach, he stopped to notice a flock of birds flying toward the cottage. He thought they were ducks until they got closer and headed over the deck where our Dad had often sat on a swing to read or watch his family play on the beach or in the water. It was then that he realized they were white doves and an immediate sense of peace came over him.

Then I remembered   the story my father had entertained us with this past September about his pet pigeon,Oscar (who by the way was renamed Oscarina after laying eggs!) and how we had “surrounded his bed like a flock of birds” as he  hovered above us between two worlds in the hospital..and it made sense that we found racing pigeons as beautiful as white doves to accompany him to Heaven.

With the image of those beautiful birds flying high, circling the sky then finding their way home, I am reminded that our father’s spirit lives on in our hearts and that as we  enter into this new cycle of life, we need to recover and rebuild. It will be a reflection of the very best of what our Dad has given us.

This blog post represents the first anniversary of starting this blog, Write On- my” blog-aversary”. Because of you, it has gone far beyond my expectations and  I dream of taking it even higher than before. I will move on and Dad’s spirit will live on through me..

On the wings of a snow white dove, I will find my way..


  1. What a captivating story about the doves! Beautiful writing and a touching story about your father going home!

    • Thanks Libbye! So good to hear from you

  2. I am glad to hear that your father’s passing was peaceful and he lingered long enough to allow all of you to grieve and become more accustomed to his passing, if anyone can become accustomed to such a thing. I am also glad you found the doves/pigeons. They sound beautiful in their flight and very appropriate in their symbolism. Take good care of yourself in the days to come.

    • Thanks,Stephanie for your kind words We found solace when those beautiful white birds took flight

  3. Kathy: This is a beautiful tribute to your dad. I can see y’all hovering inside the mausoleum wearing tears mixed with sleet as you watched those brave birds soar skyward. What a lovely picture of your dedication and devotion to a dad who obviously made a positive contribution to the world — thanks for sharing it with us! I’ll keep you in my prayers as you help your mom deal with all the realities death brings. Take some time to properly grieve, and know your dad is in a much better place!

    • “Taking time to grieve “will be the next challenge..the image of those beautiful birds soaring Heavenward will bring solace
      Thanks for your kind words and prayers,Deb

  4. You are often in my thoughts. This brings home my memories about my own father. I’ll pass on to you his legacy to me. It is his motto: “In all you do, do your best so when you lay your tools to rest, you’ll be proud to sign your name.”

    • What a wonderful motto from your Dad.Thanks so much for stopping by and sharing,Katherine.

  5. What a starkly beautiful image — icy white sleet and snow white doves rising into it, pulling the spirit from the cold body into the warmth of the spirit realm. I’m so touched that you are able to write so freely and movingly in the moment of this grief. It’s gripping in a way that more processed feelings seem to lack.

    Congratulations on your first blogoversary. Well done, and many more.

    • Sharon,

      The image of those beautiful birds taking flight against the icy sleet will be a source of solace for a long time to come-breathtaking. Thanks for the warm wishes on my “blogoversary”!


  6. Kathy, your writing is superb. What a coincidence that your borther happened to be at the right spot to spot those beautiful white pigeons! I wonder if that was the God’s plan from the very beginning.. the departure, so well arranged!

    You should take time to grieve. As you know it is essntial for you and your well-being. Your dad IS one of a kind and he is saying,””I have a “one of a kind “daughter. He IS very proud of you..aren’t we all?

    • Thank you Smita for your consoling words. I am taking one day at a time as I move forward- there are so many precious memories of my “one of a kind” father.

  7. Oh, Kathy, I’m two years ahead of you in this process. If I can help, let me know. I will say that this book helped Mom and I very much: “I Wasn’t Ready to Say Goodbye” (
    She even referred back to it for more than a year after Dad’s passing. She also joined a grief “recovery” group about 3 months after the funeral. It was a 12-week “class” and she found that incredibly helpful too. Just some thoughts for you and your mother. I am aching for you and wish you the very best.

    • I’ve ordered 5 copies of the book for my Mom ,my siblings and myself to help us through this next phase of grief. Thank you so much,Lynne, for your support and guidance. I appreciate you being there!

  8. Kathy, I love to think of your dad, as you described it, sitting on the porch of the lake house, reading and watching you all play. What could be better? It sounds like he had a lovely life. Yes, your blog is a beautiful tribute to him!

    • Thanks Louise. Yes, we do have so many precious memories,especaiully from the lake.

  9. My parents are 89 and 81 and I find posts like this difficult to read. I can only imagine and of course, don’t want to. But this is so beautiful, it gives me hope and courage. My father’s WWII comrade died in the most horrible of ways and yet more than 50-years later, we were able to honor him in a way that was beautiful and peaceful. Thank you for sharing your experiences. ~Karen

    • So nice of you to stop by ,Karen. I’m glad you found hope and courage from my experience. Although it has been so difficult to say goodbye to my Dad, I find the process of paying tribute to him to be very consoling. Your story sounds fascinating and I will look forward to reading your book. There is a special place in my heart for WWII “greatest generation”veterans! Thanks for your comments.

  10. Kathy, I’m so sorry to hear of your father’s passing but am glad you were all able to see him and to be with him. Please accept my heartfelt condolences. Both my parents are gone and not a day goes by that I don’t think of them and their words of wisdom. My father used to say “the hardest part of anything is getting started.” Blessings to you and yours in “getting started “on your journey without your father here in the physical. You have such a way with words in this piece. I’m sure the doves will be on your shoulders as you write.

    • Thank you,Sue for your kind words. It really did help to be able to stay by his bedside for 11 days. Your angel book is very consoling too. Now I feel like I have a special guardian angel in Heaven. Blessings.

  11. […] the pain of losing my beloved father and in doing so have found much peace and solace. This blog post had the most views of any to […]

  12. […] The busiest day of the year was December 2nd with 78 views. The most popular post that day was On the Wings of a Snow White Dove… […]

  13. Congratulations on your one year anniversary Kathleen, and I relate to your story, My grandpa was like that with animals, his favorite were deer. I love this blog post most of all, the description that you use in the story is the best I have ever read by you, it grabs be right at the beginning. all except the story of the raw milk LOL, that is my favorite story by you. very well done, and well written. see you soon, Ritchie Write on…

  14. Thanks,Ritchie. Appreciate your comments. I guess that raw milk story really got to you!! See you Monday.

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