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HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY

This page began as a gift from Emily to her Mom on our 2nd Mother's Day without Luke, May of 2002.
The background and everything down until the sunshine was created by Emily.


And with the morn,
those angel faces smile


which I have loved long since,
and lost awhile


Know that Luke will always
be near to his Mom on this
Mother's Day
and all days to come







YOU ARE MY SUNSHINE

(the words to this song were recited at Luke's service)

You Are My Sunshine
My only sunshine.
You make me happy
When skies are grey.
You'll never know, dear,
How much I love you.
Please don't take my sunshine away

The other nite, dear,
As I lay sleeping
I dreamed I held you in my arms.
When I awoke, dear,
I was mistaken
And I hung my head and cried.

You are my sunshine,
My only sunshine.
You make me happy
When skies are grey.
You'll never know, dear,
How much I love you.
Please don't take my sunshine away.

~Written by Jimmie Davis and Charles Mitchell;
Copyright 1940 and 1977 by Peer International Corporation.






LUKE'S NEW JOB

Ever since I was young
There's always been things to do
Learn to walk, learn to talk
Learn to tie my shoe

Be polite, play nice with friends
Luke, is your homework almost done?
Drive careful tonight when you pick her up
And I hope that you have lots of fun.

Being a kid is the best in the world
The things to do are really great.
I'll take my time and enjoy the ride
It won't matter if I'm late.

Then I grew up..... with jobs and work.
Do this, do that I'm always told
I always seemed to work for some jerk
Real friends are few, some friends are cold.

Then one night this job offer came.....
"THERE'S LOTS OF THINGS TO BE DONE.
LOTS OF TRAVEL AND NEW THINGS TO SEE.
I PROMISE THAT YOU'LL HAVE FUN."

"THIS JOB IS DIFFERENT FROM THE OTHERS,
AND YOU WON'T HAVE TO TRAVEL TOO FAR.
YOUR FORM WILL CHANGE, YOUR SPIRIT WILL GROW.
SO, LUKE, WOULD YOU LIKE TO KNOW MORE?"

"YOUR NEW JOB WILL BE TO HELP OTHERS,
AND YOU'LL BE WORKING ALL DAY LONG.
BUT THERE WILL BE NO MONEY WORRIES,
WITH THIS JOB THAT DOESN'T BELONG."

"LUKE, THIS IS A VERY SPECIAL JOB,
THAT I NEED JUST THE RIGHT PERSON TO FILL.
I KNOW YOU'RE THE PERFECT MAN FOR THE JOB,
ALL YOUR LIFE YOU'VE BEEN PERFECTING THIS SKILL."

"YOUR WORK WILL BE ALL OVER,
ON THE EARTH AND IN THE SKY,
BUT TO THE ONES YOU LOVE ON EARTH,
LUKE, YOU WILL HAVE TO DIE."

"HERE'S A GLIMPSE OF WHERE YOU'LL BE WORKING,
SO YOU CAN SEE WHAT IT'S LIKE OVER HERE,
YOU SEE, IT'S BEAUTY BEYOND ALL BELIEF,
AND YOU CAN VISIT THOSE BACK OVER THERE."

"I'LL GIVE YOU THIS OFFER IN WRITING,
THE ONE THAT WAS MADE SO LONG AGO,
WRITTEN IN MY SON'S BLOOD ON THE CROSS.
LUKE, ARE YOU SURE THAT YOU'RE READY TO GO?"

Yes, I've seen what it's like and where I will be,
And I'm ready to start right away,
But first there's someone I must go see,
And something that I must go say.

Mom, I'm so very excited.
I've got this great new job to do.
But I have to start it right away,
So I must say goodbye to you.

I know you will cry and be sad that I'm gone,
But it's the greatest job I can imagine.
No pay, no hours, no stress, no worries,
You see Mom, my new job is in heaven.

So when you cry and when you're sad,
Just remember what I'm going to do.
I'm going to help others everywhere,
Mom, just like I always wanted to.

When all those special days come around,
And it makes you so down and blue,
Just think of me mom, for as your son,
My biggest job is to always love you.

2002 ~ Robin Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001
(a gift from Robin to Christine
on her second Mother's day without Luke)






PAIN IS THE PRICE

A young girl labored to give birth,
Long ago in some yesterday.
To bring her son into this world.....
Pain was the price she had to pay.

When she gazed upon his tiny face,
All pain vanished from within,
Her pain no longer lingered,
She was with her little man.

He grew so fast, the years went by,
Then off to school he flew.
Her pain came back, a different kind,
Caused from a heart that's blue.

As time went on his mother found,
That this pain too will pass.
Just by the glow upon his face,
As he told of his day in class.

There were many times he struggled,
Through illness and a world unfair.
Her pain returned within her heart,
The pain from his despair.

He learned to deal with illness,
And forgiveness was in his heart.
She saw his unconditional love,
And her pain began to part.

Then, one day, school was over,
And her little man was grown.
Her pain returned the day he left,
To set out on his own.

He worked so hard and did the things,
That made his mother smile.
Her pain had vanished once again,
She was happy for awhile.

Then one dark and lonely night,
God took him from her hands.
Her pain came back, an unknown pain,
That she could not understand.

She knows her son is waiting,
They'll walk hand in hand someday.
But, until the day they reunite.....
Pain is the price she has to pay.


2002 - Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001






THANK YOU MOM

Thank you Mom for giving me life,
When you were just a young girl,
Enduring the pain of childbirth,
As I entered into this world.

Thank you Mom for enjoying our time,
All those years I was growing up.
I always felt so safe with you,
Even when life became tough.

Thank you Mom for believing in me,
And respecting me as a man.
Please know it wasn't all in vain,
God just had another plan.

Thank you Mom for helping me cross
To my journey the night that I died.
We were never really apart,
In my heart you were right by my side.

Thank you Mom for trusting your dream,
When I came to tell you goodbye,
Even though you don't understand it,
Mom, I needed your help to die.

Thank you Mom for realizing with faith,
That when I drew my final breath,
My soul continued to live on.
Love can't be destroyed by death.

Thank you Mom for shedding those tears,
When you thought that no one knew.
But you were never crying alone,
I was there to help you through.

Thank you Mom for being aware
That my presence survives and is strong.
I didn't leave, I'm still right here,
Only from sight am I gone.

Thank you Mom for working so hard,
To keep my memory alive,
By sharing with people everywhere,
That my spirit didn't die.

Thank you Mom for listening to me,
As you write down these heartfelt lines,
Knowing I speak directly to you,
Through memories and thoughts in your mind.

Thank you Mom for understanding your heart,
So that even in death I can say.....
"I love you Mom, forevermore,
And I'll be with you on Mother's Day".

2002 - Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001






THOSE HANDS

Those little hands that clutched my finger,
When you were just a baby boy,
Those gooey hands that touched my face,
And somehow gave me so much joy.

Those dirty hands that made their mark,
Upon the walls and upon my heart,
Those busy hands that worked with love,
To make that special Mother's Day card.

Those talented hands that filled my ears,
With music that came from your soul,
Those excited hands that took control,
Of the wheel at sixteen years old.

Those gentle hands that comforted me,
When life was too much to bear,
Those strong hands that held me close,
When it seemed that no one else cared.

Those cold cold hands that I warmly touched,
When your body was absent of life,
Those spiritual hands that call to me,
As I dream of you all through the night.

I'll never forget those hands of yours,
The ones that made my life worth while,
I'll reach out to hold them again,
When I've finished that last weary mile.

2005 - Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001







THE BOUQUET

I saw her in the distance
As she was kneeling down to pray.
Tightly clutching a bunch of flowers
That she brought for Mother's day.

The sun was just arising
Casting shadows on the ground.
As she cried there at the headstone
There was no one else around.

She arranged the flowers in the vase,
Blew a kiss from her trembling hand.
Then she turned her eyes to heaven
Saying "Please help me understand."

I watched as teardrops trickled down
And fell upon her lone bouquet.
I knew that she was hurting
So I gently wiped her tears away.

She shuttered when she felt my touch
Because she thought she was alone.
So I wrapped my arms around her
Right there at that granite stone.

I heard her sigh and saw a smile
Appear on her tear stained face.
She was glad that I had joined her
At this final resting place.

She stared fixated on the stone,
The proof her child no more remains.
Her lips whispered what was engraved
As she sadly read... my name.

2007 - Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001

Published
Summer 2011, Volume 26 No. 05
LIVING WITH LOSS magazine
Bereavement Publications, Inc.







WE USED TO

We used to sit and watch
As the sun would fade away,
Right there in the backyard,
But that was another day.

We used to hug each other
As you left and said goodbye,
Right there on the front porch,
But that was before you died.

We used to laugh together
Watching something on TV,
Right there in the family room,
But that was before you had to leave.

We used to have those special talks
As you shared your heart and soul,
Right there on the patio,
But that was so long ago.

We used to sing together
As your music you would play,
Right there in your bedroom,
But that was some yesterday.

We used to dry each others tears
When someone broke your heart,
Right there on the sofa,
But that was before we were apart.

We used to sing happy birthday
As you blew candles with one breath,
Right there in the kitchen,
But that was before you left.

We used to open presents
As the tree was lit up bright,
Right there by the fireplace,
But that was before that night.

We used to say goodnight Luke
With that kiss upon your cheek,
Right there in the lighted hall,
But that was before your final sleep.

We used to do a lot of things
That we no longer do,
Right there in that "other" life,
But that's when I had you.

2004 - Christine Ross

~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001






THE SPACE BETWEEN

The day he was born and the day that he died
Are the beginning and end of a dream.
I cherish those things from the days of his life,
The days in the space between.

"Memories of sweet soothing lullabies
And the bottles, and diapers, and tears.
Warm cuddles and kisses all through the night
And faint whispers in soft little ears."

"Swing me real high, want you Mommy?
Kiss me and sister night-night.
Mommy I wanna help, please let me help.
My tricycle fits me just right."

"Momma, see what I made at school today!
Look, Daddy taught me to ride my bike.
I like my teacher, but not more than you.
I tore my pants, Momma, I got in a fight."

"Guess what Mom, I have a girlfriend.
Look, I made you something in shop.
I've really got a lot of cool friends now,
See ya Mom, I'll be down at the bus stop."

"Hey Mom, I've got a date for the dance.
Wow, driving a car is really cool.
Look, Mom I got my first real paycheck.
I can't wait to graduate from school."

"Oh Mom, college is really tough.
A new job and life is moving on.
Goodbye for now, I'll wait for you.
Thank you Mom, for all you've done."

He came to me one fateful day
And he left too soon, it seems.
So I cherish the days that matter the most,
The days in the space between."

2002 - Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001






A RED, RED ROSE

I remember a red, red rose
That I held within my clasp.
It was a long, long time ago
From a life that didn't last.

It's fragrance filled my senses,
Soft petals touched my face,
It was given to me with
A warm and strong embrace.

The fragrance and the petals,
Those arms that held me tight,
All things from that lifetime,
Have now faded out of sight.

But the love that surrounded me
Remained deep within my soul.
And it returns to me when...
I remember a red, red rose.

2012 - Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001






I THOUGHT ABOUT YOU TODAY

I thought about you today
as I awoke to your flickering candle
entering another day without you here.

I thought about you today
as I heard the train whistle in the distance
remembering the sound of your sweet voice.

I thought about you today
as I walked through your memorial garden
wishing that your stone was not among the flowers.

I thought about you today
as I made my way down the long drive
wanting to find a letter from you in the mailbox.

I thought about you today
as I felt a tear gentle arrive on my face
hoping that you know how much I miss you.

I thought about you today
as I watched the rain dance across the sky
wondering if you were up there dancing too.

I thought about you today
as I caught the scent of the pine trees
imagining that we were camping in the woods.

I thought about you today
as I breathed in and then released a sigh
knowing that you are only a breath away.

I thought about you today
as I cleaned the dishes in the sink
longing to wash a plate you had eaten from.

I thought about you today
as I took a sip of cool clear water
realizing that you will never thirst again.

I thought about you today
as I quietly shut the blinds at sunset
desiring to talk with you at the close of day.

I thought about you today
as I fell asleep to your flickering candle
entering another night without you here.

2005 - Christine Ross

~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001






AUTOGRAPH

Your name was etched upon my heart,
When you first journeyed down this path.
You came into my life to live.
You touched me... with your autograph.

And then with crayons on the wall,
So secretly you placed your name.
No famous artist's works compare,
Although your autograph was plain.

Home from school with special papers,
So proudly placed upon the fridge.
Your writings and your works of art.
Your autograph along the edge.

Then came the essays and reports,
Employment and applications,
Greeting cards that you signed with love,
Your autograph, your foundation.

Your name, still etched upon my heart,
Again you journey down that path.
You left my life for worlds unknown.
You touch me... with your autograph.

Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001






I'VE SEEN AN ANGEL

"You say you've seen an angel?"
My friend asked me today.
Without a hesitation, "Yes,
I have seen one," I say.

He said, "What does she look like?
Is there a halo and some wings?"
"No", I replied quickly,
"She doesn't have those things."

"She does have, the warmest smile,
And is loving like no other.
"I ought to know," I said,
"for this angel, is my mother."

author unknown






BABY BOY

Baby boy come to me,
Come to me upon the wind.
Baby boy touch my heart,
Touch my heart and soul again.

Fly from where the angels dwell,
And fly into my dreams.
Take me back to yesterday,
Before the morning gleams.

Let me rock you in my arms,
And sing to you a lullaby.
Let me hold you baby boy,
Before you say goodbye.

Baby boy come to me,
Come to me upon the wind.
Baby boy touch my heart,
Touch my heart and soul again.

© Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001







LULLABY OF A LIFETIME

Oh, to be a mother.... a blessing not matched by anything else on earth. I remember gazing into the eyes of my very first newborn baby girl and wondering what life had to offer her, and where she would go, and who she would love. My long awaited Mothers Day had finally arrived. A few years later I was gazing into the eyes of a sweet little baby boy wondering all the same things. I found myself holding a beautiful bouquet of flowers for him that were announcing..... "hello".

Nothing in this world can compare to the feeling a mother has when she first greets her little one and sings that very first lullaby. That in itself is something that not everyone gets to experience. Some mothers lost their babies before their child ever took that first breath. And some mothers lost their babies soon after they were born, never getting that opportunity to sing that first lullaby before their child died. I feel so fortunate to have had that opportunity. That first lullaby for my little baby boy was 'You Are My Sunshine'. As I sang, I watched as his eyes sparkled like the sunshine I was singing about. I will never forget that moment as long as I live.

I am so very thankful that I had "my baby" for 21 wonderful years. I was able to hear him say that most precious thing to a mother's ears....Maaa Maaa Maaa, then Mommy, then Momma, then Mom. All those different ways that he said my name represent epochs of those 21 cherished years. What incredible memories I have of baby bottles, and diapers, and little cries and giggles, and kisses, and cuddles, and sweet soft whispers. Time moved on and just like that, he was playing in the backyard and swinging really high, and riding that little tricycle everywhere. Next he was off to school with artwork piling up on the refrigerator door, and coming home with torn pants and a sad little face. More time passed and there were girlfriends, and hanging out with the guys. Before I knew it he was in high school, and going to dances, and driving a car, and working at his first job. Graduation came, then college, then a career. But just like that, in a blink of an eye, it was all over. All the things that I thought would come next, never came.

The next thing I knew, I was standing at the cemetery staring down at a gravestone with my son's name on it. It was early morning and the sun was just beginning to peak over the mountains as the tears streamed down my face. I was seemingly alone on this special day, and I begged the sky for understanding. My long dreaded Mothers Day had arrived. I soon felt my son's presence there with me on that very special day. I found my trembling hands holding a beautiful bouquet of flowers for him that were announcing..... "goodbye". I began to sing that lullaby to him. As I sang I watched his stone sparkle in the sunshine that I was singing about. It is a moment that I will never forget as long as I live.

A sort of peace came over me as I stared at that stone. As I read those dates I began reminiscing on all the amazing things that were between those two dates. Those were the times of his life, the times to be remembered, the times to be celebrated. I told him I loved him. I told him I missed him. I told him how thankful I was for all the great times we had between those two dates. Mothers Day had come again, and it was good because those memories of him filled my heart, and my soul, and my mind with an awakening..... a lullaby of a lifetime.

2011 - Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001








THE JOURNEY OF THE RED ROSE

The red rose is a beautiful flower that carries with it the meaning and symbol for "love". The color red itself evolved from an early primal symbol for life into a metaphor for deep emotion. As the tradition of exchanging roses and other flowers as gifts of affection came into prevalence, the red rose naturally became the flower of choice for sending the strongest message of love. This is a tradition that has endured to the present day. Red roses continue to be the most popular way to say: "I love you" to someone special.

My husband, Robin, gave me a bouquet of red roses when Luke was born. So, Luke knew all about red roses from the very beginning of his life.

Our home was adorned on the outside with several rose bushes. Many times when Luke was a toddler, he would tug on his daddy's pants leg, his daddy would bend over, and Luke would whisper something in his ear. Luke and his dad would head outside. I would stay in the house 'knowing' exactly what those two were up to. I would act so surprised when they came back inside. Luke in his daddy's arms, grinning from ear to ear, reaching out to me, very carefully holding a beautiful red rose that he and his daddy had just picked. I received so many red roses this way.

When Luke was just a little boy of about five years old he came home from school one sweet day and gave me a thoughtful little gift that he had made. It was a plastic butter dish filled with plaster, which held up some little artificial red roses. How proud he was to give this special handmade gift to 'his' mom!

A few years later my little boy gave me a necklace that had a red rose pendent on it. It wasn't real gold, but it made me glow when I wore it as if it were a fine piece of jewelry.

At twelve years old, Luke was elected to be a beau in the sweetheart court of his middle school. Oh my, how handsome he looked in his white tuxedo with a single red rose pinned to his lapel.

After Luke became a teenager, 'love' filled his heart once again and he expressed his love with red roses. Luke would be known to drive to where his girlfriend worked and find her car in the parking lot and leave a single long stem red rose under her windshield wiper blade. He did this with every girlfriend that he had through the years. When he would take a girl out to dinner at a restaurant he would place a single long stem red rose at her place at the table.

His high school girlfriend described when Luke asked her out for their first date: "I remember he was very insistent upon taking me to school that day, and I opened the door to see him standing there with a shy smile on his face and him unsuccessfully attempting to hide red roses behind his back. I will never forget the look on his face. I'm not even sure how to describe it, but it was beautiful."

Graduation came and it was prom night, and Luke still had plans for red roses. I remember so well how he had a bag of red rose petals in the refrigerator and then just before he left the house to pick his date up, he gently sprinkled the red rose petals all on the seat and floor of the passenger side of the car. He also left the house with a bouquet of a dozen red roses.

His heart continued to be filled with love for the rest of his life. The last entry in Luke's journal was: "When there is love in my heart and a smile on my face, I need nothing else".

When Luke died at the age of twenty-one, Luke's dad, sister and I each placed a singe red rose next to Luke's urn at his service. We wanted to remember him in the way that he so lovingly remembered others. As we sat there on the front pew of the chapel we began to realize that Luke's red roses not only had touched our lives, but had made a lasting impact on the lives of so many others. We watched as several of Luke's friends entered the chapel, walked silently to the front, and gently placed a single red rose next to his urn. Luke's red roses were not only placed under windshield wipers, or at dinner tables, or in the hands of someone special...... they were also placed upon many hearts that have been forever touched by the gift of red roses. Not only was Luke's heart filled with love, but he filled many other hearts with love. Luke's gifts of red roses had come 'full circle' and were graciously returned to him as he quietly left this earth and journeyed to the land where there is an ever abundance of love and smiles and red roses and.......... he needs nothing else.

2012 Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001




THE LITTLE BLUE VASE

It was Mother's Day! Luke was 3 years old and Emily (Luke's sister) was almost 5. On Mother's Day I always had to pretend that I was sleeping while Robin (my husband) got up with the kids and they all prepared breakfast for me and served it to me in bed. I could hear the giggles and the shhhhh's drifting down the hallway from the kitchen along with the aroma of good things to eat. I knew my two little sweethearts were so excited to cook for me and I could hardly wait to see what they had prepared. I could hear the rattle of the tray as the dishes clanged together while Emily and Luke tiptoed down the hallway with their Dad to the door of our bedroom. I pulled the covers up to my chin and closed my eyes just before the door burst open with the sweet sounds of "HAPPY MOTHER'S DAY!" Emily and Luke ran and jumped in the bed with me while Robin set the tray in my lap. There on the tray was a little glass bottle that had been hand painted with poster paint and in that little bottle was a little purple plastic flower. I said "Who made this beautiful vase?" Luke replied as he squeezed my neck "I made if for you Mommy." I told him how much I loved it and what a wonderful job he did on it. He was still hanging on to my neck as I looked at such a beautiful decoration on my tray full of wonderful surprises. Oh what treats they bestowed upon me.... a glass of orange juice, a cup of coffee, some odd-shaped pancakes, and something that looked mysteriously like scrambled eggs. No fancy restaurant could ever compete with that early morning Mother's Day breakfast served with much more love than nourishment by my sweet little boy and girl. The company that surrounded me was fit for a Queen. I sat there in my bed and ate every single bite of my special breakfast except for a few shared with the smiling faces of my two children sitting next to me. That is exactly how I felt that Mother's Day morning..... like a Queen.

After breakfast we all got dressed for Church. We arrived at church dressed up for the special occasion. Robin was wearing his suit, Emily was in her pale blue chiffon dress, Luke had on his little dress pants and dress shirt, and I was wearing a pretty dress that had a flared skirt. During church there was recognition of all mothers by the mothers standing up. Oh I was so proud that day when I stood there with my husband and 2 children seated in the pew next to me.

After church service everyone was standing just outside the church door talking in groups. Luke and Emily were right there with us. Luke was holding on to my leg as we stood there talking. There were other groups of people behind us talking also. I kept feeling a draft, but didn't think too much of it. I just thought that the wind was blowing. As I was talking I felt that draft again! I looked behind me and Luke had the bottom of my dress in his hands pulled up above his head providing a perfect view for all the groups of people behind me. I turned around quickly and pulled my skirt down, although it was already too late. There were sounds of snickering from the other people standing behind me. I'm sure it was the talk at the table of a lot of Mother's Day celebrations that day. I was so very embarrassed that I told Robin we had better go. Once we all got safely into the car I looked around at my family as they solemly looked back at me. I was expecting some words of encouragement, but instead there was a burst of laughter coming from the three of them. I gasped and I'm sure I had a very discerning look on my face. But as the laughter continued on the drive home, I couldn't help but laugh too.

When we got back home from church I placed that little blue vase and flower in the very center of the table. They served me a wonderful dinner prepared by my husband. We all bowed our heads as Robin said a beautiful prayer and thanked God for giving his children a wonderful mother. I was so touched.

That special day was a long, long time ago but the memories of it are very fresh in my mind. That precious little vase and flower still rests in a special display cabinet in our home that holds all of my favorite treasures. I take it out every Mother's Day and just hold it and absorb all those feelings and memories from that day long ago. I can't help but smile as a tear runs down my face because sometimes..... I even feel a little draft.

2013 Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001




MEMORIES IN THE STARS

My husband Robin and I have been watching Star Trek together since it was a TV series in 1967, when we were sweethearts at age 14. The very first Star Trek Movie was released in 1979, the year that Luke was born. Several months later, close to Mother's Day, we went to see the first Star Trek Movie. Luke was a little baby and Emily (Luke's sister) was almost 3 years old. We all went to the drive-in theater in the little town that Luke was born in... Soda Springs, Idaho. We watched it from our car while I held Luke in my arms and Emily sat between Robin and I in the front seat. I remember looking past the screen at the stars and the moon that were shining so brightly that night. My mind drifted from the movie as I thought about how grateful I was that the 'keeper of the stars' had brought us all together and had given me the honor to once again be a Mother. The soft moonlight was shining on little Luke's face as I looked into his eyes. Heaven was definitely smiling down on us. I had everything.

The years passed and more Star Trek movies followed in 1982, 1984, 1986, 1989, 1991, 1994, 1996, 1998 and the four of us were always in line together at the opening day of each movie. As we waited we talked and laughed and anxiously anticipated what the big screen had in store for us. We always sat together in the same row loaded down with buckets of popcorn, sodas, and candy. In the car on the way home we all shared our favorite scenes.

We also watched the Star Trek TV series as a family. Emily & Luke were huge Star Trek fans. Luke had a collection of ALL the STAR TREK movies and ALL the STAR WARS movies. I can't even count how many times we stayed up late at night with Luke watching Star Trek movies and the Star Trek TV series or how many times Luke talked his dad into staying up until 2am to watch a STAR TREK movie, when Robin had to be up early for work the next day.

We all talked often about our anticipation for the next Star Trek movie to be released in 2002. By the time it was released Luke had already died the year before in 2001 at the age of 21. None of us could bring ourselves to go to the theater and see it. All those years of standing in line for the opening had ended because it just didn't seem right without Luke. No more buckets of popcorn, no more talks and laughter, no more anticipation, no more memories to be made. When it was released for rental we decided to rent it, but it was so difficult to watch without Luke. There on the TV screen was JEAN LUC PICARD (pronounced LUKE). I cried through the entire movie. I felt so guilty for watching it without Luke.

Then in 2013 when Emily came to visit it was during the premier of the 2013 Star Trek movie, and it was also her birthday. So for her birthday she invited us to go see the Star Trek movie with her and her boyfriend of many years, Dave. As we stood in line waiting for the tickets I was sad, but I felt as if Luke was there with us. We went into the theater and ordered buckets of popcorn and sodas and candy. Then Emily and Dave led us to the seats. Without even knowing it Emily chose the perfect number of seats. She walked down the row and Emily sat down, then Dave next to her, then I sat down next to Dave and then Robin sat down. Next to Robin at the end of the row was only one empty chair. I knew that was Luke's seat for the movie. As the commercials began I was hoping for a sign from Luke. There was a Coke commercial where they sang the entire song "You Are My Sunshine." This was an amazing sign from Luke. At Luke's service in 2001 the words to that song were recited in my letter to Luke because I used to sing him to sleep with that song all through his life. When the song began in the commercial, Robin and I looked at each other and knew that Luke was again letting us know he was there with us. During the movie there was a song played named "Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven." We always sit for the end credits. There on the screen was: LUCAS FILMS. Also someone was named APRIL (the month Luke died), someone named LUKE, and then someone named CHRISTOPHER ROSS. So there were all the signs from Luke..... an empty seat, You Are My Sunshine, Everybody Wants to Go to Heaven, April, Luke, and Lucas Christopher Ross.

The year before Luke died he had purchased a telescope and used to sit on the balcony at night and watch the stars. I would peek out through our bedroom window and see him up there and wonder what he was thinking about. After he died we had a star named after him because of his love of the stars and his love of movies about the stars. When we look at the twinkling night above I know that Luke is peeking down on us from beyond the distant sky where he has found a home at the end of his..... TREK to the STARS.

2014 Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001






NEVER LEAVE

They say that you are really gone
Although your suitcase wasn't packed.
I saw no maps of where you went
Or how you will come back.

I didn't hear the door close
Or your car pull from the drive.
I found no reservations.
They all say you're not alive.

I think you would have called me
From the place they say you went.
But I never heard the phone ring
So to me it makes no sense.

It's been a long, long time ago
Since the day I saw you last,
But I don't care what they say
They're wrong about the past.

I'm tired of all the lies I hear
That you're in another place.
Everywhere I look for you
I always see your face.

Sometimes in the dark of night
I think I hear you say goodbye.
But I know it can't be true.
I don't think you ever died.

The stars that shine up in the sky
Tell me that you're not gone.
It is the stars that understand
And know I can't move on.

This is the world I've made for us.
Some say it's make believe.
But like the stars communicate....
You'll never really leave.


2014 - Christine Ross
~ in memory of Lucas Christopher Ross 1979 - 2001








"VISIT WITH LUKE"

Last Entry in Luke's Journal:

"When there is love in my heart and a smile on my face,
I need nothing else." ~ Luke Ross

"MAY THE FORCE BE WITH YOU"

Music playing:
YOU ARE MY SUNSHINE