Bryce Dean Oakland Memorial Understand The Times, International

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Bryce Dean Oakland Memorial

June 23, 1974- August 5, 2001

 

August 5, 2011 will mark the 10th anniversary of our son’s graduation to heaven. No one can possibly understand the pain and grief our family experienced when we lost a son and brother like Bryce - unless one has personally experienced the loss of a child or a brother and sister when he or she was young.

Bryce died in a car accident in Saskatchewan. He was only 27 years old at the time. In the prime of life, he was suddenly taken away from us in a moment of time.

Each year at this time we are especially reminded how much we miss him and will continue to miss him until we meet again. We have many wonderful memories of our son (brother to Wade and Angela) from the moment he came into the world and on through his life. He loved life. He loved the farm. He had many friends.

It is also at this time of the year that I am personally reminded of the countless hours that I missed spending time with him because I was away from my family due to ministry demands. Needless to say, it is not possible to turn the clock back and do things over.

While this may sound somewhat mystical, and please know that I know that Jesus Christ holds the keys to life and death, somehow I believe that when I faced death just two years ago, Bryce was cheering me on to keep up the fight. While the number of my former friends and colleagues continues to dwindle as I continue in the battle, each day I look to the Lord and ask Him for His protection and guidance.

But there is one other thing that is important to me. I continue to be encouraged by the small wood plaque that I keep on my desk that Bryce gave me for a birthday present one year before he died. The plaque is just a simple statement. “Roger - God’s warrior.” I know that giving me this plaque was meaningful to Bryce. He believed in Jesus, and he was proud of me.

The photograph below was taken about 15 years ago – five years before Bryce died. It is taken in our back yard at our home in the province of Saskatchewan. I also keep it in a place where I can be reminded daily. While Bruce is not with us in body, he is “present with the Lord.”

Oakland Family Photo 1996

Back Row From Left
Wade , Bryce
Front Row From Left
Angela, Myrna, Roger
The dog is Sam

 

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