Tom’s Story

Site created on July 21, 2020

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Journal entry by Bob Rombach

Hey Dad!

Exactly two weeks to the day after your cardiac arrest you got the all-clear to come back home. What a story! What a miracle!

At 12:45 today Mom texted, "We will be leaving the hospital around 1:30!"

Our prayers have been answered. You were coming home. Wow. Praise the Lord!

Later that day, I had a meeting in Shell Lake. I knew I was going to cut it close on your arrival time so I went as quickly as I could. I was on my way back from and got the call from Mom.

"Hey Bob, we're just heading into Grantsburg. Are you home?"

Crud. I was just leaving Siren. Almost home, but not quite close enough to be there when you got there.

"Shoot. I'm still a little ways away. Can you just drive around a little bit?"

Well, you guys didn't drive around long enough so when I pulled into the driveway I saw Steve and Gerri's car and your van. I knew Steve and Gerri were helping bring you home. They were so good to Mom and you through all of this. 

I could hear you before I could see you. You were giving someone grief. I smiled and thought, "Dad's home".

When I walked into the house, your back was turned and there were a couple of people between you and me. I hope I didn't injure anyone as I bee-lined it to you. I could already feel the emotion coming out. You told me later that I hugged you too hard. Not sorry.

I knew it was coming, that moment, but I was still overwhelmed. Like a little kid is ready for Christmas morning, but not really. Maybe it was the weeks-long anticipation or just the reality of seeing you standing there in the flesh, but Dad it was the greatest thing ever to get to hug you, like really hug you, again. Like a thousand Christmas mornings and Thanksgiving dinners, and Vikings Superbowls (probably).

I know God has given us more time together. I know there are no guarantees of how long that time will be, but I am grateful for every moment we get. And not just with you, with everyone I love. There's just not time to waste on trivial things, and most of it's trivial, isn't it?

I can't wait for everyone to get to see you and tell you how they were praying for you and for us. This town, this area, your friends and family from your youth until now, rallied around us, prayed for us. We are surrounded by special people, Dad.

I can't wait for you to meet the EMTs that fought for you when you were weak. They brought you back to us.

I can't wait for you and Mark to get to see each other again. In a moment you went from friendly neighbors to one of the most impactful people in each other's lives. Both of your lives quite literally changed that day.

I'm so excited to get to keep doing life with you and Mom.

I'm so glad that your ten grandchildren get to have you around longer.

I'm overjoyed that this story has a very happy ending. 

I love you, Dad.
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