Saturday, March 17, 2012

Happy Birthday Bryan!

As the rest of the world celebrates St. Patrick's Day today, our house celebrates something else.  32 years ago today my life forever changed.  I became a big sister, a role I still take pretty seriously.  Ask any of my brothers, I am still as bossy as I was when I was five.  Watching Eliana with her brothers is a constant reminder of my childhood.  So today is full of happy memories of dinosaur and baseball parties.  Today is the day  I should be eating green angel food cake with my brother but I am not.  God chose to call him home two years ago.  With Bryan gone I am always trying to think of ways to help my children know who he was.  So today we will have green angel food cake and maybe I'll let the kids have some Mt. Dew (Bryan's favorite drink).  We will tell stories and look at old pictures. 

My kids have heard some stories enough that Eliana tells them like she was there when it happened.  Her favorite is probably that Bryan was a terrible loser.  When we were kids he once threw the Sorry game across the table.  After that Kevin and I refused to play board games with him.  As an adult we all laughed about it.  He did get better the older we got.

Bryan was an aggressive basketball player.  Once at the hangout (the church's youth center) he ripped his ear.  He didn't even care.  Trev and I had to make him go to the ER.  My mom's favorite part of that story is they thought she was Bryan's girlfriend.  I am pretty sure Bryan did not find that funny! 

Bryan had a big heart and loved the Lord.  He spent many of his college years going on mission trips.  The children in Brazil always had a special place in his heart.  Bryan was a man of few words.   My mother says that was my fault.  As a child I never let him talk.  There is some truth to that.

Bryan loved the outdoors.  He loved his family.  Our last  Christmas he spent weeks making Eliana a doll house just because I asked him to.  He spent many summer days fishing at the pond with Eliana.  Those are the things she will always remember most. 

Those are just a few of my memories.  I have 30 years of them!  Even though God chose to call him home much sooner than anyone wanted,  I am thankful for the brother he was and that God let him be a part of my life for the time that he did.  I would love to hear your memories of Bryan.  I would love to be able to tell my children stories that I may not have heard before.  Please leave a comment!

If you are reading this today the 17th, say a special prayer for my parents.  Today is harder on them than they let anyone know! 


  1. (crying)
    I never met Bryan but I know how special he is by how much his family not only loved him but enjoyed being with him.

    Praying for all of you today but a special prayer for your Dad and Mom.

    Thanks for sharing about him!!!

  2. Oh Bethany, that brought a tear to my eye and also put a smile on my face.

  3. Bethany,
    I was so sad the night Ian called me to tell me that Bryan had passed away. I wanted so badly to attend his services but McKenzie was due and I ended up having her on the 17th. She turned 2 today and her birthday always makes me remember Bryan. I always had so much fun hanging out with him. He was always such a good friend. I am praying for all of you today. It will be good to see him again one day. Best wishes and God bless.


  4. The thing I remember most about Bryan is that he was always there. I laughed to myself as I was thinking of what to post...the man never talked much, but when I look back at pictures or think back on memories--he's always there. He was this quiet presence. He had a slow smile that would begin as a twitch on his lips and then the grin would slowly appear until it took up his whole face. He loved hard and I think he knew how to just "be" with God in a way I deeply envy. His life wasn't about hustle and bustle and ambition. It was about living simply, loving deeply, and enjoying the beauty of God's creation. He is one of those people I always expected to be around, and his passing reminded me to not take people for granted. The only negative thing I can say is that he was as stubborn as a mule-- :) But all of you Lee kids get that honest, so what can I expect?? :) I don't remember ever being able to "talk" him into anything he didn't already want to do. And really, that's not a bad thing anyway.



Whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 10:31