Two for my Skyy


Rare indeed was the sudden velocity of the storm that swept through the Flathead just before 8 p.m. and I just had got my pickup in the garage and came down the hallway only to see slightly illuminated just by the fading sunlight the large canvas picture of my deceased yellow lab Skyy, a present from Sandy, sparkling in the corner like a flashlight was shining on it. Surreal

Skyy hated storms and hid in the bathroom or next to my bed and this was like she bid farewell six hours after her death to let me know she’d crossed the Rainbow Bridge but would always be looking over me with a thunderous crack.

I hope you will allow I can’t yet describe Skyy’s passing without breaking into tears even though she let me know it was her time and long ago had my permission to romp into her next life with my assurances when she was ready.

I have similar challenges trying to stand up and she always watched with concern seeming to almost will me to my feet much like I did for her. But Tuesday her back side refused to cooperate and while she could walk after we got her up she couldn’t get up without assistance.

When will you know, I had asked in a program some time ago. Indeed it was time.

Sure there will be those who won’t understand the feelings that some of us have for our pets but my dogs have always been family members.

Skyy understood my every word since coming into my life almost 14 years ago. We grew old together, her not many years now older than I.

I really wanted to get her into the Flathead River water at her favorite spot one more time but it wasn’t to be and while Bob and Krisco were able to get her to her feet by putting a towel under her torso her quality of life roaming Holien acres had diminished to the point where she’d rather sleep most of the day.

She did love people food and while not a picky dry dog food eater, she preferred part of what I was eating which we shared that morning.

I don’t think I will ever get up all her hair in the house or the truck and that’s certainly all right. Some will share a spot with the clay footprint Dr. McKee made.

Her passing was peaceful, dignified, solemn and quick.

Many times when someone asks me about In My Opinion, they’d cautiously inquire about Skyy like those of us who prefer the dark side of the microphone; she enjoyed her own invisible radio reputation.

And the kind words, thoughts, and reactions more than 500 of you shared were amazing, helpful and therapeutic. Thanks to the magic of editing, a bit easier than the cut and splice of my early radio days I was able to get some of this to you in words.

Again corny to some I’m sure but my previous observations of my sensitive emotional state should provide the explanation not needed here.

Will there be another many have inquired. I think that is it for me since I see her at every turn and still find myself sharing my thoughts because she never made me justify my beliefs.

And I have the enhanced photo Karen did for me and of course Sandy’s portrait.

The storm is fading and the thunder diminishing as I am ready to live along with her memory.

Let’s face it death is inevitable and even with animals predictable. That doesn’t make it any easier does it?



If there was any doubt about the power of social networking, or in my case Facebook, it certainly was alleviated last week with the passing of my beloved yellow lab Skyy.

While I am listed on several other platforms, my usual method of daily personal communication is to the news feed and additional reminders for the promotion of this program.

But I was overwhelmed with the kind reaction I received and wanted to let you know how much it meant to me in addition to how helpful it was.

I have progressed to the point at least I can talk about Skyy without completely wailing to the point of non-communication.

While I really thought I was prepared for the eventuality being a pretty emotional guy anyway – remember I already have told you I cry in joy and sorrow at Hallmark commercials – Skyy’s travel to the Rainbow Bridge for lack of a better description flat knocked my socks off.

But so too did the some 600 folks who took the time to either react, some several times, on Facebook, and the approximate 50 percent who wrote such kind words.

I wish I could thank you all personally but this is one way I will have to do it besides also utilizing Facebook.

A heartfelt thank you. I’ll never forget such graciousness.

In many genres I am a history buff and today am touched by what often happens when anniversaries of notable occurrences go largely unnoticed.

And while recognition of June 6 has a life of its own because D-Day often is used in another context in addition to the 1944 assault on Normandy, it is an example of how as we fade further and further away from a pivotal occurrence, recognition is so fleeting.

Thus maybe your D-Day is one of completion or deadline but in the case of “A Day of Infamy” the day represented so much more and certainly should not be absent from recognition.

With no political leanings I say maybe cable television is just too busy analyzing the tweet of the day and rest assured network news will carry an obligatory survivor story on the nightly edition but I wonder if the importance of today is not an example of the importance of worldwide cooperation to defeat oppression and deserves even than a two-minute blur


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