Wednesday, May 21, 2008

a big truck sure is useful

we all know that a big, powerful truck is always handy to have around. that is the reason we bought our dodge ram, long bed, extended cab, diesel truck several years ago! mitch said that we got it so we could make friends because you know that the guy with the truck always gets called to "help out"! so far it has worked!

here are some of the reasons why we love our truck:
*it pulled our fifth wheel around for 7 weeks on our sabbatical last year
*it helped while landscaping our front yard and backyard as it hauled tons and tons of dirt, gravel, allen blocks, sod, plants, rocks, .... well you get the picture!
*it moved a bunch of junk, i mean stuff, to our storage unit
*it helped haul big power tools here and there
*it's good for taking trips to the dump
*it's moved several people into new homes
*it has been mitch's "tent" on several young men camping trips

over the years we have found new and exciting uses for our truck, however, this weekend we were honored to find yet another use for it!

if you remember, back in march our ward family lost a young hero when 16 year old ross barfuss went into the ocean in an attempt to rescue a stranger in the surf (go here and here to read the story).

well, about a month ago they found ross' body and the family was able to bury him this past saturday. when mitch found out that the dna test came back positive for ross, he went to the family's home that night. as they planned for the dedication of the grave site, the family didn't feel like a hearse was ross. knowing how much ross LOVED mitch's truck, they asked if mitch would carry the casket to the grave in our truck. we were absolutely honored that they asked this of us!

mitch recalled a time when ross ran up to him in the church parking lot during a youth activity and excitedly said, "mitch, i love your truck! i'm going to have a truck just like it someday!" it only seemed appropriate that ross would get one last ride in the truck that he loved so much!

not only was mitch able to drive the "hearse", but i was equally honored to photograph the event! here are some of my favorites:



we have truly been blessed to know the barfuss family, and our prayers continue to be with them! "rest forever from this world, ross! may angels lead you in."

28 comments:

Siouxsie said...

I cried through everyone's entries about Ross' story, so touched by an obviously unique and special boy. I'm crying through this entry, too. I'm so glad Ross got a final ride in his dream truck. Thanks for sharing.

ashley said...

that really is cool that you guys could help, and he would be so stoked to know he got a last ride in the truck.
i still can't even imagine...

Darilyn said...

Your pictures are great Mahina. I love that Ross got one final ride in the truck. We sure miss that kid. He will ride forever in our hearts.

calibosmom said...

WOW! How cool that he loved his truck so much and that he got to have one last sweet ride in it. Thanks for sharing these tragic yet amazing photos. He looks like an amazing young man!

Hollyween said...

That is so amazing. I was actually just thinking about this story the other day and wondering if they had found his body yet.

What a privelege and honor for you and your family. You must have been special to him.



Off topic:
I have a friend named 'Siouxsie'. I didn't know anyone else who spelled their name like that until I saw your previous commenter. Small world!

Bridget said...

That is so great Mitch got to use his truck for Ross. YOu guys are awesome!

Loved those pictures too.

Teresa said...

That was a tear jerker...just like everything else that has been written about him. How wonderful he was able to have one last ride in the truck. That's so beautiful. Thank goodness they found his body. What a feeling of closure that must help the family have. What an incredible young man...and how beautiful his story is.

Motherhood for Dummies said...

that is such a sad story, but so sweet that he was able to do something that we would have loved. You guys are so sweet to be so helpful

aric & jess said...

Thanks for this post. Your initial Ross post is what endeared me to your blog. What a very special honor.

Melissa-Mc said...

Wow, what an incredible honor. I loved the slide show. I'm glad he got one last ride in that truck.

Tonya said...

How awesome that Ross got to take one last ride in the Mason-mobile!That must have been a great feeling when his family asked you to do that.I love that they didn't feel that a hearse fit their son. The slide show really told the story of the day, so thanks for sharing:0)

Mandy said...

So touching. What an honor for your family and for him. Such a tragic story but so thankful they were able to recover his body. May he rest in peace.

Ashley said...

Thanks for adding the slideshow - it was great to see everyone there. What an honor for your family and truck.

Erika said...

Wow. Like many others have commented, this story has really touched me & I too have cried through the blogs you posted about the situation.
I'm so glad his body was found-as a mom, I think I would need that.
I enjoyed the slide show, great pictures. Clearly it was a celebration of life and the wonderful boy Ross was.
Thank you for sharing this personal situation with all of us.

Amanda said...

I had heard that they found his body. I am so glad that the family was able to do a graveside service, and I am grateful that they have the gospel. I hope that they find peace.

Thanks for sharing your pics, Mahina. You are a very talented photographer.

Ilene said...

I'm all teary looking at the slideshow. The truck is awesome and I'm glad you were there to take pictures for the family.

What a beautiful day it was in Portland. I'm sure Ross appreciates your kindness towards him and his family.

Elizabeth said...

Oh, man, now you made me cry again. You are such a talented photographer, and the slide show was amazing! It was an amazing event, one to remember...always.

tutu lady said...

Mahalo, Mahina, good job! I agree with all the other comments. Love you all.

i'm kelly said...

i remember reading about this on bridget. what a wonderful service you provided to the family... i'm sure it meant so much to them.

Pineapple Princess said...

I love the reason that you got the truck--to help others. I can't think of any better way to do just that.

Your talent with the photos just made the story even better and more beautiful.

I love the whole "full circle" for Ross and the truck. Great post Mahina.

Rachael said...

I'm so glad you posted this. I missed it, because of the YW camp hike. I love the photos. The truck story was awesome. It feels so great to help out in such a way. Simple but special.

Scott-n-Allison said...

Wonderful pics...it's nice having a way to help and let the family know you care. If you never do anything useful with the truck again, it will have been worth it for this one day.

Becca said...

It is neat that they asked you to help with that. I watched that slide show and couldn't help but cry. I am so glad that his body was found though, I am sure that brings peace and closure to the Barfuss family.

Lauren said...

Thank you for sharing this. I didn't "know" you when this first happened but I read it on Bridget's blog. I am going to go back and read your posts now, too.

I am so glad they found his body. I hope it gives the family some sort of closure. I love that your beloved truck got to carry such precious cargo. I cried when I read your beautiful words, "may angels lead you in."

Paula said...

Thanks Mahina for the memory of the day. It was special and having pictures will help forever. Paula

Danielle said...

what a wonderful thing your family was able to do for the Barfuss family. Your pictures are beautiful and I love the fact that they asked Mitch to use his truck.

katie said...

wow. I'm speechless. How amazing to be able to help a family like that. Once in a lifetime. And awesome pictures. You captured everything beautifully.

Thanks for sharing!

hailey said...

THanks for the pictures, you have a gift. I've only known the Barfuss family since they lost Ross, and I agree with you that they are amazing.