I Saw My Fathers Dead Body Today


If you are new to this story, please read Immorality, Hate, Selfishness, Greed: A Family Portrait first.


I saw my fathers dead body today, just laid out on a cold metal table.

I was told when I arrived that I’d be viewing him just as he was found. I had no expectations, really, but felt as if I was suffocating as soon as I walked into the room.

Up until that point I’d been up all night praying that this was just another one of the their lies, a huge fallacy that hadn’t caught up with them yet, like some of the others; but the white sheet that draped his body gave way to the reality of the situation and I found myself completely overwhelmed.

The sight of my father laying there alone and still, I wanted to save him, breathe life into his lungs, take him back to that moment where we last danced at my wedding but I could only collapse, as my emotions took over and left me sobbing hysterically.

Crumbling over his body, I had tasted no deeper tears as time turned inward, and all the years of my life crashed together, forcing the decades I’d lived to touch in that single moment. It was the last time that I would see him. There would be no more hugs, no more memories made, it would be the final good-bye.

I can still hear the piercing aches of pain escaping my lungs as my eyes, in all they took in, gushed with anguish, drowning in puddles, resting on my fathers shirt.

I laid there, sobbing, grateful for the moment, even though I had no idea how I’d get through it, come to understand it or make peace with it; I knew I needed it to move on, I knew the moment was meant for me and I was blessed to have it.

Lost without my soundness, nothing truly made sense and still doesn’t.  I replayed the days in my mind. My brother’s words, in a vulturous chant, repeating themselves over and over again, “He’s dead Kerri, I found him this morning and I’ve cleaned his house out of anything worth anything”.  I grieved even more, his heart plainly shown in his words.

I thought about my cousin, 856 miles away and the Facebook post that she’d read giving suspect to my fathers death. I lay there, sobbing, reflecting on the phone call to my fathers house and how my brother repeatedly lied; saying my father wasn’t home so he, his wife and my birth mother could continue to clean all possessions out of my fathers house.

I recalled my daughter and the phone calls I was forced to make to friends and family within seconds of learning of my fathers death so others weren’t slammed with their loss reading it in a Facebook post.

I wept even harder thinking about my daughter and how she was alone when I was forced to tell her and how close she was to her grandfather and how heartbroken she must be.

I gave heed to how the heartless decisions of my brother and birth mother have hurt so many people and all for their love of money, selfishness and greed. Not even in death can they strum up a moral between them to do right. It’s deplorable and pitiful but it’s how they live.

Then I thought about my father as I lay over his body, clothed in my pain, soaked in my tears. I remembered that he once told me that it doesn’t matter the depth of the hurt or who it is that inflicts the pain, we must always love, not just love but also forgive because when our time comes we don’t want to find ourselves weighted down with anger in our hearts.

I started to wonder then what he saw in the last moments of his life, I wondered what his thoughts were, how he felt, did he hurt, was he mad or feeling pain? I needed to know if he suffered. I didn’t even know how he died.

I got up to search his face and was startled by the look of peace and happiness that was resting there, along with a small contented smile, all noble and dignified, simply resting upon his lips.

This was a hug from a God, a hug I so desperately needed, a whisper from Him, in the moment, cradling my pain. I knew then I’d forgive. I don’t know how yet but I will.

© Kerri Bishop Reece | Kerri Chronicles

PS: Thank you, J.B. for  being a true friend to my father and taking care of my daughter and myself, breaking the law, making it possible, giving us time with him, allowing us a final good-bye. We will forever be grateful.

To Read more of Healing Kerri on Kerri Chronicles:
Dear Rapist, an Open Letter to the One Who Abducted My Innocence
My Mothers Legacy of Shame – An Open Letter – From Me, the Daughter She Didn’t Protect


11 thoughts on “I Saw My Fathers Dead Body Today

    1. Thank you so much for this, Brian. Peace is slowly finding me. It’s just so much easier to forgive than it is to work through the anger of my loss. Comments like this are like hugs from a far and they are greatly appreciated, my friend.

  1. Hi Kerri. One never does get over it. My mother died ten years ago, this year and my father two years ago. In both cases I was the first to see them. then my wife and daughters. The immediate sorrow is overwhelming and like I said you never quite get over it, though time, that terrible moment fades away and you only remember the fond moments before. 🙂
    Take care

  2. Some people behave badly when someone dies, my dad’s “new family” didn’t tell us that my dad had died until 9 years after the event! I had so many questions for him after he left and cut all ties with his children. They were motivated by money, my dad had owned a hotel and they didn’t want it going to his children! Like you I try to be dignified and respectful but these people just want stuff.

    1. We’re better for being dignified and respectful. Setting the better example makes the biggest impact. Not being around those that have done us wrong, we may never see how our actions have impacted their lives but they truly have and in a way that they will never forget because love conquers all.

  3. I’m glad you had that moment with him to gain peace and perspective. Losing someone is so hard. but it’s especially hard when you can’t share that loss with the people who are supposed to be family, who are supposed to care as much as you do. I know when my grandmother died all I wanted was a piece of jewelry of hers so I’d always have her with me, but my mom and aunt cleaned out all of her possessions and sold anything of value before I could. It’s hard to lose them so completely. I think a lot of people can relate to this.

    1. Thank you, Megan. So sorry to hear that you were not able to get a piece of your grandmothers jewelry. It’s traumatic enough when someone dies without having those around us that don’t have our best interest at hearts when it comes to saying good-bye and our healing. It’s taken me a good bit of time to digest all that took place.

Why hello, friend! Thanks for sharing your comments. Should you have a question, please feel free to ask it here and I'll do my best to reply promptly. Thanks for stopping by! xo Kerri