Thursday, February 12, 2015


Brrrrr!  It's cold outside!  I'm in Asheville, NC, to produce tonight's Celtic Winter Blast ... just checked the outdoor temp and it's already at the forecast high for the day: 39 degrees. Although I've got the heat on, I feel the cold creeping toward me!  And I'm reminded of a time, many years ago ...

Back in 1976, when my dad was 50 years old, he developed Myasthenia Gravis, a neuromuscular disease that in his case was characterized by debilitating muscle weakness.  Searching for relief, by January 1977 he'd ended up in Shands Hospital, Gainesville, Florida.  My mother and I had gone back home to Arcadia, to work during his hospitalization.

January 19, 1977: The Day It Snowed In Miami

I was working as a teacher's aide in Arcadia, in a moden, practically windowless building.  The extreme cold in Miami had put a tremendous load on the power grid, and rolling power outages were the order of the day.  Imagine a building full of squirrely adolescents with only emergency lighting and no heat!  Since they were already in school, special preparations had to be made to call an early closing, so we were all stuck with each other for a few hours, at least.

And then the unexpected call came from my father.  "Please come get me.  They are discharging me today, because there's nothing they can do for me."

Sitting at my desk in the semi-dark, I felt the cold creeping toward me.  Was it physical cold?  Or was it the cold, empty feeling of "there's nothing they can do for me."  Time seemed to move unnaturally slowly as I contemplated my father's hopeless case.  By the time my mother and I were finally able to get on the road for Gainesville, we were both numb from cold and worry.  I still remember that drive ... occasionally touching the window glass of the car to feel how much colder it had gotten outside ... seeing great icicles dangling from tropical plants ... and I remember seeing my father's pale and grim face as they brought him in a wheelchair to the car.  "There's nothing they can do for me."

He lived another 27 years.  Most of them were fairly healthy years.

I'll spare you the details of the series of miracles that led to his eventual relief, but I will just say how grateful I am to God for those miracles, and for the medical team who were His earthly agents of healing.

It's time for another miracle, God willing. 

Greg can use your positive thoughts and prayers.  Thank you all for holding us close to your hearts.