Austin Glen Denney
Feb 26-May 24, 1982
There are few service men or women in my inner circle. I am immensley grateful for the sacrifices that are made every moment by soldiers in my behalf, but for me, this holiday always holds memories of my little brother.
My brother has been on my mind a lot recently. There are a few reasons that I can pinpoint:
- The 29th anniversary of Austin's birth and death has just passed. While I haven't always paid attention to the date in previous years, I did this year.
- My recent move has put me a short distance from the cemetery where he is buried. I drive by often. I have always made an effort to stop there once a year, but I find myself drawn there for no obvious reason these days.
- I've been feeling like a lousy steward of my own life these days. I've been given so much opportunity and resource and I am not proud of what I've done with it. And I wonder what he would have done with the same opportunities if he had been given them instead of me.
- It's amazing to me how vivid the memories remain from 29 years ago.
It's a beautiful view eastward across the Salt Lake Valley and up to the mountains. I spent a long while there this past week. I have been doing A LOT of soul searching. I am hoping to understand the decisions I have, and continue, to make. I believe that the birth, life, and death of Austin have had the greatest impact on who I am today, what I value, and who I hope to become. I wonder about who he would be? Which of our family members he'd be most like? What my relationship with him would be like? Would he have a wife and babies...or would he be keeping me company on the singles side of things? Who would I be?
I want to find more appreciation for my time here in mortality. I want to learn to take better advantage of so many opportunities that he never had. What words of advice would he offer me if he could? What does he now know that would bring me hope and patience in the things where I lack?