On January 27, 2011 Eric Merkley was diagnosed with osteosarcoma. An aggressive cancer that we hope and the doctors to this point seem confident that is contained to one spot on his leg. Prognosis is good. Treatments and recovery will be long and painful.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Farewell - Sunday July 15

Where to begin....Eric was so calm all morning.  He has been looking forward to his speaking assignment and after he practiced it Sunday morning, he said that it took him about 30 mins.  I told him to remember that when you speak in front of people, you tend to talk faster.  But he decided to cut some of his talk out.  Dang!
As they were passing the sacrament, I asked Eric (well he read my lips) if the chapel was filling up.  He said that it was full, but he did not seem to get any more nervous.  He gave his talk like a pro.  He told of his story and the thoughts that went through his mind when he learned that he had cancer.  He spoke of being so scared that he was shaking and praying so hard to Heavenly Father for Help and he did receive help in the form of comfort and peace.  He related how it felt like a warm blanket that was wrapped around him, and he was able to calm down, breath normal and was comforted by the most amazing peace.  Experiences like this never leave your mind or heart. 
I can not say enough how proud I am of him.  He has conquered so much and is ready to face this new challenge he now faces in his mission.
Everyone has asked him several times if he was nervous about entering the MTC and his response was "Well the way I look at it is, I have wrestled a rattle snake, almost drowned twice, beat cancer.... why would the MTC scare me?"  Gotta love him!

Here are a few pictures from his open house with just a few of his friends!

I could not have pulled off this open house with a lot of helping hands!!  We have the greatest friends who are so willing to help at the drop of a hat.  THANK YOU!!
There were just a few people... :)

Steve Linford, Dennis Dunn, Tonya and me

More great friends who helped to feed to multitude...(it felt like feeding the multitude anyway)

Todd's parents even made it all the way down from Preston Idaho

Eric saying a few words
Dennis wrote a letter to Eric and was willing to share.  I understand that it was kind of hard to hear, but when he finished, within seconds the heavens opened up and it started to pour rain.  The point was well received by all.
Eric and 2 of his buddies.  Steven and Tim came down to share this day with us.  It meant so much to us that they did.
Of course they had to show off their hardware.  I believe it was Cory, Tim's Dad that said there is probably enough money in hardware between the 3 boys to buy a house... I believe it.  It was still so fun to watch them show off their cool legs, or jungle gyms and Macklyn believes that Eric's leg is.

I was very humbled by all the people who came to show their love and support for Eric.  Danee, from Shelly Idaho who was Eric's first cancer friend.  There are pictures of her in this blog when they were both bald and beautiful.  She has just blossomed and Maddie Cook was also there with her mom and dad.  Like Steven, Maddie's hair came in dark and curly when it was once blond and straight.  My heart was just bursting when I saw all these kids.  They have these amazing spirits about them and they all wear smiles.  Heavenly Father's Precious .... Precious children.  And last but not least Tristan and his family came.  When I turned around and saw Tiffany, Tristan mom, I wanted to start to cry again.  Because it was quite a trip for them to bring Tristan out.  I did not think they would make it and when I saw Eric talking to Tristan, I can not put into words the image of those two boys talking.  There was just love and respect between them and you could feel it.  Eric truly understands what Tristan is going through right now and we both are praying for him.  It had not even been 2 weeks since his surgery. Tristan was sporting his U of U blanket and pillow case and when Daryl was admiring all the U of U logos, Tristan had to show off his cast with more U of U drawings.  Not only is he recovering from a very major surgery, but when you have an immune compromised kid, it is always a worry to be around people.
I heard that there were no seats to be found and people had to stand around to wall to listen to Eric.  Very Humbling.

1 comment:

  1. What a great missionary farewell. Eric did a wonderful job and was very sincere. We had a great time and loved experiencing the letter/rain with you. Again, thank you for the invite and you and Eric's friendship. He is going to inspire and convert so many people. We look forward to hearing his stories:)