A remarkable man leaves a tremendous hole in our hearts

It’s been a terribly sad week for us. Rick’s wonderful grandfather was diagnosed with a critical injury to his aorta, and due to problems with his kidneys and other vascular problems which he’d been dealing with for ten years, surgery to repair the transection, or tear, was impossible.

This horrible news left his family members anguished and stricken. Grandpa Plagens was a remarkably strong, brave, funny, caring, steady man who made everyone feel loved and appreciated. I hadn’t had my own grandfather since my mother’s father died while I was in my teens, but I was so fortunate to have him as my grandfather-in-law.

I wish I’d known him better, but like many of his generation, Grandpa didn’t put himself in the spotlight. A World War II veteran, he was the proprietor of Plagens Market in Wayne for about forever. He and Grandma were married for 67 years, and I can attest to the fact that they raised a wonderful family, of which I am proud to be a part.

I know that he liked to grill and watch or listen to the Tigers when they played. He liked to work in his yard and watch the wild birds that came to feast at their many feeders.  He liked dogs and loved his family, and was a generous man who did the right thing. I wouldn’t know where to start in listing all the kind things he’s done for Rick and I and others. I wish I’d known him better…

We did have an opportunity to run home last weekend to see Grandpa and tell him we love him. It wasn’t enough and I regret not having visited sooner. I was hoping (unrealistically, I know) that time would stand still while we were away, and that Grandpa would always just ‘be there.’

Grandpa left this plane of existence early Thursday morning, leaving a tremendous hole in the hearts of his family. He was a remarkable man who will be sorely missed by everyone who knew him.

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