On to the next camp in eternity on April 19, 2023, age 52
Garrett loved to plant. His wonder of things in nature was genuine.
His enthusiasm for the first peak of a green sprout coming out of the ground was a true birthday celebration met with screams of excitement and a little dance with hands raised up high. He loved to plant daffodils because he could use the fancy bulb digging tool. He used it often in his sandbox even when he wasn’t planting daffodils. Garrett loved personal quiet moments. His sandbox was his therapy place. This is where he would go to get away from the crowd, an obnoxious fellow camper or an event he didn’t feel like participating in at the moment. Once he was in his sandbox it would take a meal or a very convincing staff person to coax him out to the next thing or to use the restroom. Garrett could hold his bladder the whole day if he wasn’t reminded and taken. He would just be absorbed with the moment he was experiencing and did not want to be bothered by petty interruptions like toileting. He would create piles of sand and then move the sand to another pile. When we put fake jewels and match box cars in the sand, he would squeal with joy as if he had uncovered the treasures of Egypt.
Garrett loved to create. Painting, beading, weaving, coloring, doing anything with his hands, except work. Work had to be a game or well, it was work.
Garrett loved to play. He loved water fights, whipped cream pie fights, splashing in the river, searching for gold, catching a fish, paddle boating, riding a horse, and shooting the bow and arrow. His favorite play time was on stage imitating with his camp mates, “The Three Stooges”. Mostly throwing pretend whipped cream pies at each other. He embodied slap stick comedy.
We knew Garrett longer than our own children. He held each one as a baby when they arrived in this world.
Our second son took “Garrett” as his middle name. It is a name that is often interpreted as God’s great warrior, “strength with a spear”; qualities such as persevering, tenacious, courageous, a leader. His spear pierced our hearts with memories that bring smiles, laughter, and amazement. His life challenges us to live as Garrett, planting, loving, playing, resting, and living in the moment with wonder.
He will be greatly missed. Jerry and Laura Pierce and all at Evans Creek Up Camp
For those wanting to honor Garrett or share memories with the family you may go to www.ohairwards.com
The place is looking like a camp again.
We praise the Lord for His goodness in sending you and the
resources needed to create anew His place of respite.
We are excited that we will be able to hold Easter Services beneath our new Pavilion!
Designed and orchestrated by Craig Eaton, Eaton Construction, and built with the labor of volunteers: Hannah Southard, Steve Bohrer, Jim Harvey, Jeff Castle, Troy Farwell, Pete Russell, Craig Hartman, Mike Hartman, Victor and Jose. Steve and Jeff also created places for quiet repose by the creek, and put in fence posts. Jim H cut some major size downed trees.
The Christ Mission College of San Antonio volunteers Monte, Reva, Natalie, Saulo, Sarah, Jeremy, Ray, Lynette, Yari, Elizer, John, Anna, and Jenifer cleaned all the foundations, filled the metal box, stacked wood, cleared debris and sorted thousands of dollars of lumber donated by Parr Lumber.
Tina Eveleth, camper, Cindy Wilson and Dana Gleanon worked on restoring the trails through the memorial garden. CMC students made memorial stones that will be added to other volunteers’ creations to form a wonderful wall of remembrance.
Also thanks to Liz Donnelly and Tina for supplying plenty of Gatorade, water and lunch supplies.
Panera Breads supplied pastries and bagels.
Many thanks for log splitting, tractor work and general heavy lifting to Nate, and Forrest.
Architect and former staff, Noel (Sergio) spent four days measuring and drawing sketches that will create the final plans for rebuilding. And special thanks to David Freeman that arranged for volunteers Al Osterhoudt, and John Newberg to complete the survey.
It is a blessing to be surrounded by so many skilled people willing to share
their time to recreate what the fire turned to ash.
David F. and his wife, Shelly, brought tables, chairs, and tools for the work crew.
James Dezellum, alumni staff, put his chainsaw to work with enthusiasm and
John and Debbie V. returned to cut up more metal to haul away.
Bruce F. finished the bridge and Steve, Jeff, Troy and Pete put in the railroad ties for the fence line.
Thanks to generous donations we will be able to bring in our mobile kitchen unit and construction will begin on a small cabin that will be used this summer for our infirmary.
It is our gift from God that He would choose to raze all to ashes so
that He can bring glory to Himself through this great community of people.
So much in one week!
Jerry and Laura
On Thursday, October 1, 2020, we were able to visit the camp for the first time since the September fire tornado whipped through the entire canyon. As we walked the grounds with the insurance adjuster, we knew that rebuilding was going to be a journey. Plans are underway now to assess and repair infrastructure necessary to have camp next summer.
We are not be rebuilding alone, but with an amazing community of friends, and family that have for at least some length of time weathered the last forty-two years alongside us. Celebrating glorious joy and finding strength together in the challenges is the substance of life. To be confident that we are all undeniably purposed is the root of our faith that God has a plan for our future. He will bring glory to Himself, specializing in creating beauty from ashes.
Harvest Camp will be held October 30-November 2 at the Aldersgate Conference Center in Turner.
Christmas Camp will also be held at Aldersgate December 23-26. Reservations should be made early.
Many thanks to Aldersgate for partnering with us to continue the opportunities promised campers as an escape and comfort to a very challenging year.
Your prayers, memories, and gifts are very appreciated.
Positioned for Awe