Lt. Col. William Arthur Bamford I (1909-2006)
The patriarch of my family is gone.
My grandfather passed away this morning at 10:55 AM EST. Aside from the last few years, he lived a full, wonderful life. He was a great and humble man, who dedicated his life to serving the Lord as a Salvation Army Officer (minister), and was active in the Corps (churches) he soldiered in (attended) even after he retired in 1973. He truly will be missed by all that knew him.
I've often said over the course of my lifetime that if he (and my grandmother, who died in 2001) don't get into heaven then no one goes. Fortunately, though he is home now with his Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
Though I am saddened by his passing, his death was not an unexpected event. His quality of life was nil, as evidenced in the two times I got to visit with him recently, in July and October of this year. This increasing decline in his health was confirmed by the reports of my parents who visited him monthly, including the last time less than two weeks ago. I am comforted to know that he is in a better place now and finally at peace, reunited with his wife of almost 70 years.
The good news is, though, that I will see him again in heaven someday, and what a reunion that will be!
The funeral will likely be on Friday, so I will be away from my computer on Thursday and Friday but should be back either late Friday or Saturday.
What follows is a pictorial tribute to my grandfather from most of the pictures that I have on my computer. I've excluded the pictures showing other living relatives, not wanting to post their pictures on the internet without their permission. It's fitting to include my grandmother (d. 2001) in this tribute since she was his rock and his life.
W. Arthur & Eleanor Bamford, at retirement, c. 1973
W. Arthur & Eleanor Bamford, Aug. 20, 1987
W. Arthur & Eleanor Bamford, 65th Anniversary, Sept. 1997
W. Arthur Bamford, 94th bithday, 2003
For I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand.
I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith:
Henceforth there is laid up for me a crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give me at that day: and not to me only, but unto all them also that love his appearing.
1 Timothy 4:6-8 KJV
But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope.
For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him.
For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.
Wherefore comfort one another with these words.
1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 KJV