A Tribute to a Great Man

The funeral/ memorial service for Duane Nygaard at the First English Lutheran Church in Wisconsin Rapids, a joyful and a fond goodbye. The man was a true Christian, caring for others, especially those who were isolated and sick.

My first contact with Duane

He and I were friends for about 10 years though we didn’t spend a lot of time together. And the other day I thought over what our first real contact was. He and I swam and spent time in the whirlpool together, chatting and joking. Then I recalled when he first made an impact on me. In the spring of 2007 I was headed for heart surgery in May, valve work and other matters. He also had been operated on for aortic valve surgery a year or two earlier. We chatted about it when together, but not a lot. In late April I received a phone call from a person who wished me well in my surgery in May and wondered how I was doing. He said he name was Duane, but this’ll be hard to understand, but I didn’t know him as Duane at the Y. Often people talk at the YMCA, sometimes a lot, but they don’t know the person’s name. So when he told me he was calling to wish me well, my mind tried to pinpoint who this was. I asked what organization he was from, thinking it might be the Nekoosa Lions or the Sons of Norway, or some other group such as Retired Teachers. He chuckled, saying he’s not with any organization, he told me he was the person I talked with at the Y. I paused, I remember, and almost cried, thinking that here was someone who barely knew me but took time to call and check on me. Recovering from that, I talked and we had a good conversation. This event had a side effect, making me aware that I could be making calls and contacts like this many times, knowing people who need someone to talk to and who are going through tough times. It shook me up a little because, here’s someone who marginally knows me but is aware of what I’ll be facing. And he’s reaching out. That was an eye opener. more to come


2 Replies to “A Tribute to a Great Man”

  1. Very heartfelt and heartwarming piece. I’m glad you shared it.

    1. Thank you Dana. A real Christian man and an example for me also. Hope the family can get together this week.

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