My Grandpa Aldrich passed away in 1994. A year or so later, my Grandma began dating Doug Merritt. They had worked together in a kitchen at Michigan State University and re-connected up at the hospital where both of their spouses passed. At first, we didn’t know what to think of Doug. He was nice enough, but he was nothing like Grandpa.
Well, this was around the same time I began to date Melody, and Doug just lived up in Eaton Rapids. So, we began to have dinners with them. We loved to tell people of our double dates with Grandma! Over time, we too fell in love with Doug. In a couple years, Grandma and Doug married. It was a great time! Then, a day after their honeymoon was over, doug passed away of a heart attack.
Doug had served in the Airborne during WWII as a glider pilot. For those who don’t know what that was, these were guys who’d strap themselves into a small, engine-less plane that would get pushed out of a bigger plane to glide down (crash down) into the enemy territory. For those who didn’t blow up from flack, the ones that would make it had a 50/50 chance of making out of their gliders due to enemy fire. Lucky for us, Doug was one of the lucky ones.
It was truly a pleasure to know Doug for the short time we did. He left a beautiful space of laughter and love in our family.
Goodbye Doug, we remember you and how you served our country.