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How can you commemorate the loss of a life so precious as that of a young person with such beautiful and wonderful potential? That is the question I am left asking myself as I remember the life of my son, Jack Baggett, tragically cut short by suicide on January 23rd, 2022.
Dads don't get to spend as much time with their children as the moms their work has blessed to be the stay-at-home parent get. While it's true that the stay-at-home parent gets more diapers, messes, and tantrums, the working parent misses out on a lot: lots of firsts, lots of funny things their children do. For that and for other reasons, I missed out on a lot that Jack did. I got to see him growing up from a baby to a child to a teenager in small, short glances. The day he died came as a horrific surprise.
Now, I know Jack would have done great things for the world had he blossomed into adulthood. He will not do those things now.
But Jack is not gone. All his elements are being recycled. The iron in his blood, the phosphorus, potassium, and calcium in his bones... everything that made up his body is going out to join the elements of a billion, billion living creatures whose warmth of life, like his, is now faded away.
So, what will be the blessing he offers the world? I've decided to plant an arbor of Remembrance Trees in his name and every month I will plant a new tree to honor his memory. Those trees planted in his name will help to heal the many damages we have done to the Earth, giving hope and a future to all the others who live on in the world.
And my hope is this: that in the light of some day that I may never myself live to see that a tree will spring up with its branches and leaves raised to the sun - that the same oxygen and carbon that made up Jack's little smile, that made up the little fingers which grasped my finger the night he was born - will become the branches of a mighty oak tree, giving shade and shelter to all. Jack was a light in this world. Please join me in honoring him by planting a tree in his name at the Remembrance Arbor in Selah Springs Ranch.