Our big, lovable adventure-loving yellow lab Jack crossed over to the other side last Friday. His wanderlust was his downfall and as he headed out on a late evening foray, little did we know that a car would stop him in his tracks. We are heart-broken, but so grateful for the time we had with him.
Jack came into our lives about 3 years after Matthew died. His boundless energy, coupled with his goofy personality helped our family heal in so many ways. Unfailingly loyal (to pretty much everyone), with a passion for balls, sticks, and the open water, Jack melted everyone’s hearts. He was a “Dudley” yellow lab, which meant he had a pink nose and light-colored eyes.
We have so many Jack stories to tell, and a few of them make us realize we are lucky he lived to be 8 years old. There was the time that he swam out into Puget Sound and kept heading out to sea. For 35 minutes we stood on the beach watching him recede into the distance as he chased sea birds. No amount of our shouting and arm waving could stop him. Finally, for some reason, he turned around, only to have a seal start playing with him. It took another 10 minutes for him to make it to the shore, and once there he was hardly out of breath, and his tail was wagging.
He was definitely spoiled, with daily walks, a special spot on the sofa and a best friend border collie mix named Ruby. When the kids came home for a weekend, he slept by them on their beds. Whether he was snoring on his back at your feet, or walking by my husband's side out to the orchard, Jack was fully present at all times. He always knew exactly when to put his giant head on your lap, providing the perfect amount of comfort. Many of our friends have experienced Jack's healing abilities. He was the ultimate zen dog, with unconditional love for all who crossed his path.
So you see, Jack was perfect in every way except for his tendency to bolt. When he got it into his mind to go exploring, not much could stop him. He was an amazing fence jumper and under-fence digger. And when he returned from his walk-about adventures, he was happy and his tail was wagging.
If a life can be measured by how much one loves and is loved, then Jack’s life was incredibly rich and full. Everyone who met him fell a little in love with him, and there are many of us walking around with Jack-sized holes in our hearts. He brought us so much joy and happiness, and asked for little in return. He was a healer of our hearts, and we will miss him.