Update on Dad

By May 9, 2008#Life

It’s 4:44pm on Friday here in Michigan. My dad is sleeping right now in the Critical Care Unit. Tomorrow he will be moved to Hospice a couple floors up. This morning the doctor filled us in on what happened. It seems that he had pneumonia that helped feed a blood infection and bacteria in the blood. Coupled with an already weak heart and kidney, the infection began to weaken his liver as well and fluid was building up around his lungs making it difficult to breathe. They put him on a ventilator yesterday and he continued to breathe with its support into the morning.

My mom, sister, and I were able to talk to him this morning. We knew his wishes were never to be on life support and he confirmed that decision to us as well. We were able to spend 30-40 minutes while they started a morphine drip just talking to him and letting friends and family talk to him as we held a cell phone to his ear.

After everyone was able to share their thoughts, we stepped out of the room and they removed all life support. The doctors had expected him to expire shortly thereafter, but he began to breathe on his own and was able to even whisper to us… sometimes quoting Scripture to us. Now we’re going on 7 hours later and he’s still breathing on his own, but he’s a little less responsive. His pulse and blood pressure are steady and he’s snoring away as he always has.

We’re not sure what to anticipate at this point. With multiple organ failure, (barring a miracle) it really is just a matter of “when” at this point. I think we all feel a peace about this… a “peace that passes all understanding” He certainly has prepped us for this moment over the last year and he is ready to meet his Savior face to face. Now we wait and see. Thanks for all your prayers – we can feel the strength of God extended through them.

Author Matt

I'm a husband, father, leader, and geek whose time is wrapped up in faith, family, film, and travel. I guess I'm a little like the equivalent of a utility player in baseball. I'm happy with not being the best at something as long as I'm always trying to get better.

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Join the discussion 11 Comments

  • Matt says:

    When we talked to him this morning – tears were shed but spirits were high. We had him laughing a few times and vice versa. There were a few moments here and there where no one said anything… we just joked that he was always the one constantly talking and we didn’t know what to do =)

  • Matt says:

    He looks exactly like my grandpa when he was in the hospital years ago.

  • Jill of the Jungle says:

    I’m so glad you’ve all had this time with him. And there are so many great family members and friends giving us support and offers of help if we need anything. What a blessing.

  • Matt says:

    7:45pm ET They’re moving him to Hospice in an hour.

  • Matt says:

    9:55pm ET We’re on a general floor tonight and then transferring to Hospice. Dad’s sleeping – I’m keeping him updated on the Penguins score. I’ll be staying with him tonight.

  • Matt says:

    5:45am ET There’s been a definite change happen overnight. Probably around 2am his breathing noticeably changed from voluntary gasping every 10-40 seconds to an involuntary quiet breath every 5 seconds. The perfect timing tells me its now driven only by the pacemaker. He really seems like a shell now… alive, yet not there. The facial twitches he had before are gone as well. We’ll wait and see.

  • Robin "Susie" Richards says:

    I am your cousin sue. your mom was my dad’s sister (bob). it is so sad that after grandpa and grandma died, we seemed to loose touch with alot of family. i used to vacation in pa ( from ny ) when i was a youngster, and i have very fond memories of your dad. my thoughts are with you all. please tell your mom to drop me a line. i will tell my brothers rob and scott. my home address is robin richards 28 wheeler rd, stonington, ct 06378. phone # 860-535-2006.

  • dwayne and darlene stigsell says:

    Dear Reed family,

    We were so saddened to hear of Pauls death and share with you in your loss. We have many fond memories of times in Cambridge and also at Strawberry Lake when you taught there. I especially have memories of Pauls vitality and this will be the way I remember him. He was a unique, one of a kind man, and I’m sorry our lives didn’t meet one more time. May you feel and know Gods peace and love for all of you at this time.

    Darlene Stigsell

  • Judy Dudek says:

    Dearest Reed Family,

    I am saddened by the loss of your Husband and Dad. However, I rejoice in the great homecoming he is experiencing now. I pray that you will experience God’s grace and comfort now and in the days to come. You will remain in my prayers.


    Judy Dudek

  • Jim Wright says:

    Dear Reed Family

    I first met Paul & Phyllis in my home when they joined my small care group. I immediately saw that Paul was a deeply spiritual man. Even though he had many health problems he was always upbeat and positive and a joy to be around. We had great times praying, laughing and sharing our faith together. He will be dearly missed. I think of another Paul who said; “I have fought a good fight,I have finished the race, I have kept the faith, Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness which the Lord, the righteous judge will award to me on that day…” Paul is now wearing that crown and there is a new rich tenor voice in the heavenly choir. As for me, I thank God that he allowed me to have known one of his very special servants.

    Grace & Peace

    Jim Wright

  • Kathy Hess says:

    Matt & Family,
    Just a short note to let you know that we have emailed (or are in the process of) mailing you some photos of your dad while he was in Africa. We were living there when his team came from the church. He was very important to many of the people (especially the youth) while there and still today. We are sending the photos to your mother’s email (psreedbutler@;yahoo.com) because we are not sure how to reach you by email other than this website. Please let us know when you receive them. We hope you enjoy them. The above email address is the one that the photos will be coming from. Bless – Kathy & Charlie Hess

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