Saturday, January 13, 2018

We Love You BIGGER!!!

There are so many things that I could say about our Grandpa... But I don't think you could ever come up with enough words to accurately describe him. So I thought I would use the words of several family members to give those of you who never met him a glimpse into what made him such a special man.

"A man of incredible kindness - he made all 18 grandchildren feel like his favorite. A man of great patience - he not only taught me math but instilled a love for learning! A man of solid determination - he was willing to attempt difficult things in order to serve others. A man of amazing compassion - he would always have time for little ones or people in need. A man of countless prayers - he prayed for his family by name daily and loved to share the stories of God's goodness. A man of amazing humility - he admitted his fears to a granddaughter and together we learned what it really meant to trust Jesus. One week ago we were standing together, smiling for the camera + sharing laughter + creating memories. Today Grandpa is enjoying the beauties of heaven + our Savior Jesus. I can't even begin to find the words to describe the incredible impact of his life on mine, but may his legacy live on forever in the lives of those he left behind!! I love you BIGGER Grandpa! See you in heaven someday!"
- Ruth (Wissmann) Bourlier

"Some men leave their mark on the world though great earth shattering victory's and others on the hearts of countless individuals by living victoriously in the daily habits of life. This week I've been trying to find the right words to write but none seem just right. Grandpa, you taught me what unconditional love looks like in daily life. You found joy and laughter in the little things and embraced every opportunity to learn and grow. You taught us to always trust Jesus and h...onesty shared your journey. You didn't mind a little girl tagging along with you in your work, but seemed to enjoy experiencing the wonder of life together! Nothing or no one went by you without being notice. You will be missed deeply, and while my heart is hurting I am so thankful for the promise of heaven and not only to know you as Grandpa but as a best friend. I love you bigger!!"
- Elizabeth Wissmann

"It’s hard to think about the fact that just one week ago He gave me one of his big hugs and said “take care of that little one, mama” as we parted ways at the wedding. It’s hard to imagine that he is no longer here with us on earth, but is walking the streets of Heaven with Jesus. I will miss his sweet teasing and charming sense of humor, the sparkle in his eye and his big grin as he handed me one more chocolate chip cookie...and then another, and the hugs he gave as he said “love you bigger.” He was so special, and was always more than just my husbands Grandpa, because he treated me as if I was one of his own grandchildren. I will cherish the memories I have of him in my heart forever and I am extra thankful that my husband has so much of his Grandpa Hager in him."
- Kori (Knuth) Wissmann

 "Grandpa, words can't express how much I'll miss the twinkle in your eyes. Your warm bear hugs. Your charming humor. You invested into my life in a million ways and I count you as one of my very best friends. I will always love you bigger!!"
- Rachel (Wissmann) Busenitz

"I’ve been trying to find the words to tribute the life of my grandfather but I can’t seem to narrow it down. You see, I am lucky to have so many memories with my grandparents and the beautiful family they built but what stands out the most to me are the things I observed when you didn’t know I was watching. The amount of love and respect in your eyes when you looked at Grandma, the kindness you’d show to complete strangers, your work ethic not only in providing for your famil...y but in volunteering as well. His mentality to never give up on anyone or anything spoke volumes to who he was. He could literally find treasures in anyone’s junk and he did that a little too often. No item or relationship was invaluable to him. If it wasn’t working it just needed some elbow grease and a little TLC. Thank you for always seeing the potential in all of us and putting in the work to nurture our relationships. While my heart is hurting from the loss I am so thankful to have had the opportunity to learn and grow from your example. Love you bigger grandpa!"
- Jenna (Hager) Christoffer, our cousin

"I've never been good at finding the words to express myself. Especially when the emotions run deep. But how can anyone ever put into words all that you mean to me. Over the years you have taught me so many things from riding bike to driving a skid steer. But more than that you've taught me the importance of patience, selflessness and unconditional love. You will always be missed and our memories treasured. I love you bigger and look forward to seeing you again someday!"
- Susanna Wissmann

"The kindest man I ever knew, the biggest heart one ever did have, the deepest love for those he knew...that only begins to explain the gift I gained in this Grandpa, by marriage. I've never known someone to make each person he encountered feel SO special!! Heaven gained one incredible guy last night, but it's left a gaping hole in all of our hearts, who loved him here on earth. We will miss you, Grandpa!! I was blessed to have known the man of integrity you were, my kids lives were richer because you were in it, and I look forward to the day you can give me a grand tour of what's beyond those pearly gates! I know you'll have found all the best spots, and have lots of stories to tell. Your legacy will far outlive your lifetime!!"
- Abi (Rehm) Wissmann

"Humility, integrity, and encouraging others. Just a few of many qualities my Grandpa taught me by example. I’ll always love being named after one of my best friends. I’m going to miss you in a million ways, but especially our talks about the projects we were working on, or the ideas we wanted to try. Your example to put others first is something that will challenge me for the rest of my life. Love you Bigger! See you in heaven! II Timothy 4:7-8"
- Stephen Gerald Wissmann

"The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord,
And He delights in his way."
Psalms 37:23

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

In Loving Memory

We cannot say Thank You enough for all the love and prayers. It has been a hard start to the new year, but we are so grateful for all of your support and God's faithfulness. He is good, all the time!
The funeral will be Saturday morning. There have been many tears shed as we look through pictures and talk about the wonderful memories we've made together. Grandpa and Grandma have had such an impact our lives. We feel so blessed and humbled to have such a legacy. We are so very grateful for the years we had with Grandpa and look forward to seeing him again in heaven.

Grandpas life was one of service.
- Serving on the front lines during the Korean War
- Driving school bus routes for 25 years
- Hauling milk for  41 1/2 years
- Active member of their church
- Volunteered with the Fire Department
- Created and volunteered hours of service for a flag display at the cemeteries
 - Building houses
- Founding member of Castalia Tractor Days
- Collected Allis Chalmers tractors and toy trains (as well as other things)
And kept busy in his free time with woodworking, architecture, drawing, cookie and cake decorating, gardening and making maple syrup.
But first and foremost came people. Meeting new people, staying in touch with old friends, swapping stories, joking and teasing. He was a delight to all who knew him.
The final thought that Jerry wanted to leave with his family is this:
“Love one another and stay in touch with each other.”
“This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you."
John 15:12

Wednesday, January 03, 2018

Grandpa Hager

There are some people on this earth that make such an impact, you wish they could be a part of it forever. Yesterday morning we lost not only a dear dad, grandpa and great grandpa, but a best friend to all of us. He was no ordinary grandpa and we will miss him more than words can express! Someday we will see you again in heaven and I cannot wait to be wrapped up in one of your giant hugs, hear your deep laugh, look at you in the eyes and say one more time “I love you BIGGER!” We would greatly appreciate your prayers during this time for our Grandma Marlys Hager and the family.

"The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord,
And he delights in his way."
Psalms 37:23

Mr & Mrs Matthias Wissmann

They're married!!!

We are so thrilled for Matthias and Michelle! The weather was cold, but everyhing else on the wedding day was delightful. I am looking forward to sharing more pictures with you all!!

"Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good."
Psalms 135:3