Every time he would call, the same greeting would resound, “Hello, it’s Father Paulson!” I always thought it was hilarious – especially since his hearing was going so the greeting would be at a decible level that the neighbors very well may have heard. But it was true, he was the father of the Paulson’s! He was the oldest remaning Paulson male. It was a title that he held for decades because his brother had passed away from a heart attack in his 50’s. My grandpa always said that he thought he was living on borrowed time (both his dad and brother died very young). Well, it turned out that he borred about 40 years! He borrowed those years and he used them well.

I didn’t know that the picture to the left would be the last picture that I had with him. We jokingly referred to this picture as “Gen Ed” – four generations of “Edwins.” I grateful that my son and I carry the name Edwin forward (only as a middle name… we didn’t want to get too carried away). On Wednesday there were four generations of Ed, and today there are only three. On Thursday morning my Grandfather met Jesus face to face. He had a heart attack in March that he was never able to recover from. He battled through months of physical therapy, but he never really bounced back. He is the first of any of my four grandparents to pass away. I’m reminded today that we were never designed to experience death. That’s why it’s difficult to lose someone even when they are 91 and have lived a good, long life. Telehealth is the use of telecommunication systems to provide health or medical care. Examples include videoconferencing, store and forward technologies, and remote monitoring devices. Over the last 5-10 years since the wide acceptance and availability of broadband technology, the use of access the BetterPT telehealth pt here applications has substantially increased. The private sector is estimated to be worth over $1 billion by the end of 2010. Additionally, over $4 billion has been appropriated from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to support Health IT. The foundation of telehealth technologies is supported by two main ideas, the reduction in travel time and its associated costs. According to the American Telemedicine Association, telehealth technologies give a clinician the ability to monitor and measure patient health data and information over geographical, social, and cultural distances. Additionally, these video and non-video technologies are utilized to collect and transmit patient health information. Telehealth technologies can track the vital signs of patients with diseases, such as congestive heart failure, diabetes, and other various chronic and acute illnesses. Telehealth systems are supported in hospitals and homes across the country, particularly for their preventive medicine applications. The faster information can be gathered and transferred to the appropriate professional, the better it is for the patient. Studies have shown a reduction in emergency room visits and rescue calls, resulting in improved health outcomes for patients receiving continuous care via telehealth monitoring. These outcomes include an increase in medication compliance, a decrease in patient isolation, and improved access to immediate care and services.

My grandpa was a sweet man. He cared for people really well. Here are some of the things that I remember about him:

Ojai Vacations: From the age of 4 til about 11 I would go on my annual Ojai summer vacation. It was fun because it was just me and the grandparents; I had them all to myself and they only had to focus on spoiling me! And they did it well. I can remember every year taking the Meccan voyage down to the toy store where I had the chance to pick out one toy. I must have driven them crazy because I would take forever to pick the toy I wanted. Grandpa never vocalized any frustration, it always just seemed that he was happy to have the time with me. I can remember one Ojai vacation where grandpa took me to the men’s club where we got to sit in the hot tub with all of his friends. Just imagine me as a 7 year old with a bunch of 70 year olds sitting in the hot tub. Classic!

Stories from the war: Grandpa was in the Air Force during WWII. In the earlier days I can remember him telling stories about the war. I obviously never got to see him in this type of action, but I can imagine that my grandpa served his country proud. He was one of the most loyal men that I’ve ever met. There was never any wavering of devotion in him. He served the people well who were closest to him for his whole life, I have no doubt that he did the same for his country.

Kisses: my grandpa gave the funniest kisses. You could see them coming from a mile away because before he went in for the good bye kiss, he would lick his lips like nothing I’ve ever seen before. The lathering that went on can only be described as ‘impressive!’ They got a little bit sloppy in his old age, but back in the day when he landed my grandma I can only imagine that he was the bees knees!

Driving: My grandpa probably should have stopped driving a long time ago, but he drove up until he had the heart attack! I can remember driving with him 15 years ago and we were terrified for our lives. Grandpa was at the helm and the rest of the family was in the back seat of the car trying to keep our composure. We teetered between hysteria and down right fear. grandpa didn’t as much have a lead foot for the gas, but he did for the brake. There were times when our heads would come darn close to slamming into the back of the front seat. Good times!

Jesus: I can remember going to Ojai Presbyterian Church with my grandpa every time that we went to visit. He served in the church, gave to the church, and seemed to really do life with people from the church. My grandfather wasn’t as open about his faith as I am (not too many in his generation are), but I knew that he loved Jesus. I knew because of the way that he treated people; he was sort of old school that way. My grandpa made sure that I knew he was proud that I was a pastor – that meant a lot to me.

There are so many more memories that I could share and write about, and I might at some point. I think I will close this ‘Ode to Father Paulson’ by simply stating, “I’ll miss you, Grandpa.” I know that while this goodbye seems so permanent, the truth is that it’s only temporary. You will be/are missed, but I know that you are in glory and I’m praising Jesus with you for that!