Dr. Wilson I am so sorry to hear of the passing of your father. You and your family are in mine and Kevin’s prayers. If there is anything you need please call me. Sandra and Kevin Garland
Robert W. Seifert
Robert W. Seifert
Entered into rest December 16th, 2023, in Missouri. Beloved husband of Carol (nee. Schreiber) Seifert. Beloved father of Ann (Daniel) Wilson & Wayne (Marlene) Seifert. Loving grandfather of 5 grandchildren. Cherished great grandfather of 5 great grandchildren. Loving brother of the late Nancy (John) Kramer. A Mass of Christian Burial will be held Friday December 22nd, 2023 at 10:30am at St. Gregory The Great Church, 200 St Gregory Ct, Buffalo, NY. Please assemble at church. Memorials in Robert’s memory can be made to Assumption of The Blessed Virgin Mary Catholic Church, 403 N Main St, O’Fallon, MO 63366. Online condolences may be made at WWW.TheDietrichFuneralHome.com
A eulogy for my Grandpa:
My Grandpa was a jukebox of stories, often loading me with ammo to use against my dad. Whether telling me about my Aunt Ann’s medical education and the ways in which he advocated for her or sharing wisdom about using our time on this earth to enjoy life or laughing about the bathroom cleaning paradigm at my cousins workplace (no janitors, just clean up after yourself), Grandpa always told stories with such a precision to detail that I’d jot notes down after we’d talk. And so, I’m going to share a few stories that I hope paint a picture of who my Grandpa was to me.
If you know anything about my Grandpa, you know that he was always playing the lottery – and mailing us lottery tickets from wherever he was – be it Florida or Missouri – for us to scratch.
I loved the crossword tickets more than anything – not because I ever won anything, but because they always, no matter how many times I lost, made me think I had a chance of winning. I asked my Grandpa recently what his biggest win was and he told me $500. Not bad for a scratch-off, and a lot more than I’ve ever won.
I’ve been thinking about the lottery more and realized that Grandpa won so much more than $500 on a scratch-off years ago. He really won this thing called life. In family – in my Grandma, in my Dad, in my Aunt Ann, in my cousins Dani and Mandy, in my brothers Ben and Tim, and in so many others whose lives were touched by his. In the friends he flew airplanes with and played cards with. And in faith, never missing a Sunday mass and serving as my little brother’s confirmation sponsor.
But the thing is, I know it wasn’t luck. It was the product of being committed to the thing that matters most: family. And because of my Grandpa’s commitment to family, I think I won the lottery too – and I would venture to say all of you did, even – before I ever had a coin to my name.
I spent the past Memorial Day at my Grandpa’s cabin in Canada, and I called him up while swinging in a hammock overlooking Pringle Lake. I wanted to let him know how special Canada was to me – as evidence by the fact that I drove twenty hours on a three-day weekend for a mere forty-eight at the lake. When I told him this insanity, he said to me that that’s the way to do it – because, to quote him, “you can’t buy that time back for anything.”
So, I’m going to share one more story from that trip to Canada. Years ago, maybe 15, my Grandpa told me about a turtle he had seen in the lake “the size of a couch.” I’ve thought about that turtle ever since, and finally, after all those years of being terrified to swim in the back bay and petrified my surf jet was going to die on me behind the island, convinced myself that turtle wasn’t real. There was no way there was a turtle the size of a couch.
Fast forward to this Memorial Day. I was washing my hair in the lake (which is absolutely forbidden but there’s no running water so please forgive me) when I heard someone near Harvey’s dock yelling my name. It was Laurel Ann, determined to tell me about how my parents had spotted a massive turtle with a scar on its head on their trip to the lake in August. I told Laurel Ann that it was so funny that she was telling me this because sure enough, my Grandpa did tell me about a turtle “as big as a couch” – but I was sure it wasn’t real. And my parents had mentioned absolutely nothing of a turtle in the month since returning home from the lake.
So, from that hammock, I told my Grandpa the story about Laurel Ann and how I had convinced myself that the turtle he once warned me about was nothing more than a story, but that now my parents had reported seeing the same beast, scar and all. And sure enough, my Grandpa confirmed what I had always hoped to be tale.
He told me that 40 years ago, he was launching the boat in Garrison’s Bay when the motor of his boat smashed against the head of a giant turtle. And the thing is, I’m sure he already knew about my parent’s turtle spotting long before I did – because the thing about my Grandpa is that he was inextricably close to my Dad, the kind of father-son bond that withstands all elements. So close that I also know that my Grandpa knew my current efforts to get my Dad to Canada for New Years; Dad, I know grandpa told you that you can’t buy a minute of that time back either.
My Grandpa gave us family and he gave me perspective. He left this world living, and I think that’s exactly the way he would wish for us to continue on. The cabin will be filled again with the smell of Sunday morning bacon and pancakes and of fresh-burning wood in the stove. John 16:22 reads, “therefore you too have grief now; but I will see you again, and your heart will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you.”