This is my grandfather, Paul Moore, taken about 25 years ago. And this is about as quintessential of a picture of him as I have. You see he loved to garden. It was probably his most favorite activity and he was good at it. But alongside that he loved working with his hands and his tools. When I was a little kid, I’d come over to his house for a week’s vacation, and he’d let me play with his tools. But not just to play, he’d actually show me how to use them and what to do with them. And often times, after he was done, he’d let me keep one. It was fun, and a lot of what I know today about using them is because of him. I remember when he had his rambler in the garage, and let me come out to work with him on it. Mostly I sat in the front seat and pretended I was driving a fire truck, but the rest of the time, he’d let me help. (Or keep company as best as a little kid could do). When we weren’t doing that, we’d go over to the power plant, so he could work on his garden there. Of course being who I am, he also made sure I got in to see the plant, which was fascinating to a kid like me. (Heck it’s still fascinating!). We grew a pretty close bond that not only was he my grandfather, he was one of my best friends. Everyone in the family knows this. We’ve sat next to each other at the Thanksgiving table for decades now. He in the big chair, me in the one to the right. This was also worked in our favor, because we were the only two who liked the whole cranberry sauce versus that nasty jelly stuff. Yeah, he wasn’t your typical cuddly TV grandfather, he was a very much shoot from the hip kind of guy, but I know he loved all of us dearly. As time gone on, he let me stay with him for several years when I went to college in Springfield. While sure we butted heads a few times, I appreciated him and his generosity more than anything. You see, that was one of his key things, was his generosity. From fixing up bikes in his “younger” days for kids, to selling candy bars for kids in his older days, he constantly put others before himself. Later on, in his days as a Freemason, he would sell candy bars to raise money for dentistry for kids with special needs and poor financial situations. He raised so much money, they he was coined “Dr. of Smiles” and won awards. You have to see, he sold these candy bars in front of Big Y, Stop & Shop, etc, year ‘round. January or July. He was out there. While most people retire to a golf course or to a calmer setting, he worked harder after retirement! Boy he let you know about it, too, but that was his personality. And then, all of a sudden, the toughest guy I knew growing up, started slowing down. He got sick. More specifically he got congestive heart failure. And he fought it hard. He had a laundry list of medical issues, but somehow, kept on going, for the last ten years. But as time gone on, the fight got harder, and harder. And this morning, around 4:30, the fight came to an end. God called to bring him up to the pearly gates, where he would no longer have to fight anymore. A guy with a huge heart, must be in the biggest garden in heaven, back doing what he loved so much down here. They say it’s never really “goodbye” but just “see you later”. Well Grandpa, I’ll see you later.
Thank you to the Doctors and Nurses at Mercy Medical Center for all their hard work over the years. The hospital is nothing short of amazing, and a real gem in the city of Springfield. Also to all my family, but especially my Aunt Evelyn, Uncle Ed, Conor and Eliza, for all they did. The whole family sees all the time you spent to take him to his doctor’s and whatnot, which was constant, and knows that if you want to see what the family with the biggest hearts look like, you go visit Westbrook Drive.
Paul A Moore July 15, 1926 – July 24, 2018.