Thursday, June 17, 2021



Bailey's at Sharon's for 3 days while I drive The Rig over to Mount Desert Island to attend the funeral of Stacey Gray, my niece Kim's husband. Stacey's been ill with kidney disease for years and he battled like crazy. Kim even donated a kidney to him, but no luck. Over the past decade he lost his job, both legs, and his beloved pick-up truck. He kept his sense of humor and humility, his love of dogs and his good-man moniker. He also had a wife who loved and admired him dearly. 

I visited Stacey in a Bangor hospital one late evening after his second leg amputation. High on morphine, or another medication, he talked about his life. He was depressed and who couldn't understand that. During the evening, I told him he had a right to be sad... but also talked about his dogs, his friends, and Kim. 

Throughout the evening, Stacey asked good questions. We laughed about this-n-that. He was kind to his nurses. 

The first time Stacey came to visit the Kent family at camp with Kim and the boys, he drove a huge pick-up truck and never came down to the beach. He spent his time in the Kent camp cleaning the porch windows--he might have done some painting, too. He also waxed his shiny truck. Stacey worked for the Bar Harbor Town Garage as a mechanic and snowplow driver. His stepson Jordan landed his job when Stacey went out on disability. When I told him that Jordan made more money than I did as a professor, he smiled. He liked that.   

When I picture Stacey cleaning up camp and polishing his truck, I think about these words from Kahlil Gibran's book The Prophet: "Work is love made visible." 

That's Stacey Gray.  

Kim and Stacey at Mark's wedding. 

Driving Denny's tractor. 

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