Oh what a wonderful journey we have experienced with Bryan these past 25 years. Bryan has probably experienced greater joy in his 25 years than most people will experience in a lifetime. His zest for life and his world around him is huge. He is not in love with material things but truly in love with life and learning.
Because Bryan was our fourth child, Mark and I were a little more relaxed with him. While in labor and two hours before Bryan was born, I decided it wasn’t time to go to the hospital yet and convinced Mark to just drive around for a while. We ended up at Pere Marquette and toured the USS Silversides submarine located in the Muskegon Channel. I guess I was calm.
While in junior high Bryan decided he wanted to become an exchange student. He ended up spending his junior year of high school in Germany with a great family. Weeks before he was to depart for Germany, his friends gave him several going away parties. Corey said, “You would think Bryan was going off to war with all of the fuss his friends are making.” After Bryan had been in Germany for nine months, Mark and I went to visit him. Our 15-year-old bearded son Bryan met us at the airport in Frankfurt with a girl on each side of him, a bottle of champagne in one hand and a cigarette in the other. Mark and I had flown all night, we were really tired and we weren’t in the mood to see what our baby had turned into. Even though I was ready to turn around and fly back home, we stayed and had a wonderful trip. Bryan had grown up, learned the German language and met and accepted people from all over the world. It’s funny because Corey visited Bryan in Germany a month before we went and warned us to keep an open mind when we saw Bryan and we thought he was joking. Corey wasn’t joking.
During homecoming his senior year Bryan invited his whole class to meet at our house one Sunday evening to participate in senior pranks. Before I go any further, the pranks were not destructive to property or people. After the fun pranking night came to an end, many classmates commented on how much fun it was and how much it meant to be included.
As a young boy, Bryan loved airplanes. When Bryan was in 2nd grade he was chosen student of the week and had to find pictures for his bulletin board. I came across a picture of that board and on it was a picture of an airplane. His love of airplanes continued through college in which he earned a degree in Flight Sciences and earned his pilot’s license. It was so cool seeing Bryan fly a plane and experience the thrill of flying with him.
Today, Bryan is all grown up and about to purchase his first home in Muskegon. He is in love with a beautiful girl named Ashley Goulet and together they share an adorable dog named Pongo.
I am anxious to see where Bryan’s world will take him.
Bryan, now that you are 25 years old I have to break the news to you; you are one of my favorites, but Chad, Kelly and Corey are too.
I love you Bry. Happy Birthday!