Grandpa, Dad, and Grandma

My grandfather died while chatting with my step-grandmother yesterday morning, aged 96.

I last spoke to him when I told him about my father’s death last June (they were somewhat estranged because my grandfather was a rather difficult, complicated person sometimes.)

I’m a little sad, but not as much as I would have thought. He had an interesting life, a life so unimaginably different than my own. He only went to school a few years and never quite became literate. Worked in the fields when he 8 or 9. He was completely on his own, basically riding the rails like a hobo, at 12. Drove for the Red Ball Express in World War II.

I’m having a lot of mixed feelings about this. I loved my grandfather, but he wasn’t always a good father or husband.