My paternal grandfather died on Thursday, December 30, 2010. Irving Leonard Bindelglass, who I called Grandpa, was 87. We were very close and his death saddened me very much.
I had a low-key New Year’s Eve out in the City with my friend Yale. I flew down to Florida on Saturday. His death was sudden, so I was booking last-minute on for New Year’s Day on the weekend the airlines were recovering from the blizzard. So, I didn’t even have a seat assignment until I got to LaGuardia Airport. When I got past security, I went to the gate to get my seat assignment. It said 11F. I don’t know the layout of the Airbus A320 series well enough to know that that was an exit row. So, when I came back to the gate to board I was surprised to be asked if I would be willing to help out in the event of an emergency. I, of course, said I would be willing to help. Well, my seat assignment had two benefits. Being in an exit row, I had more leg room. Also, my neighbor in 11E was very nice young lady (who was flying to Florida because of her roommate’s relative’s death). We had a couple other things in common and talked for most of the flight, which was really really nice. We even made fun of useless announcements together. We don’t care if we’re over Maryland. Let us know if we can see the Capitol building out the right side of the plane. Thanks. Anyway, we landed without incident and even hugged when we parted ways.
On Sunday, we had the memorial service. My father David (seen in the above photo with my Grandpa in a photo taken by my brother Perry), my Aunt Natalie, my mother, my cousin Steven, and I spoke at the service. Grandpa was a 1st Lieutenant in the Army Air Corps. during World War II. He was a meteorologist and, among other places, was stationed in Fiji and Okinawa. When I spoke at the service I told two stories about his service in the military. At some point early in his time in the military, he was ordered to drive a truck with a bunch of people in the back up a hill to somewhere. Well, he didn’t know how to drive a truck and the vehicle stalled and the people fell out of the back. Needless to say, he wasn’t ordered to do that again. He told me that story a long time ago and every time I reminded him of it, he laughed out loud. I loved that. I also told this story. For the past five to ten years, I called Grandpa on Veteran’s Day to thank him for his service to our great nation. Every time I did that, he laughed out loud. He knew I was sincere in my thanks but was also very humble about his military service. I looked forward to Veteran’s Day less to thank him and more for a guaranteed opportunity to get Grandpa to laugh out loud. I went to see my grandparents in November and it just happened that that trip included Veteran’s Day. So, I finally got to see his reaction in person. It made me very happy. 🙂
Here are a bunch of photos from my November trip to Florida. Unfortunately, I stopped taking photos after I got my rental car. 😦 The ones I took prior to that are kinda neat, if I do say so myself.
I also shot video of my landing at Palm Beach International Airport in West Palm Beach, FL on Tuesday, November 9, 2010.
I flew home from Grandpa’s service on Sunday, January 2, 2011. I had flown into Fort Lauderdale on Saturday, but flew out of West Palm Beach on Sunday. I then landed in Atlanta. On my flight from PBI to ATL, I was on an MD-88. If you have never flown through the Atlanta airport, it is quite an experience. Talk about being alone in a see of humanity. Anyway, on my flight from ATL to LGA, I had a 757 with in-flight video. So, I finally got to see the Delta In-Flight Safety Video. It’s quite a hoot. Check it out below.
My suitcase obviously took a different itinerary to get from PBI to LGA and arrived in Queens ahead of me. It would have been nice of Delta to tell me that so I didn’t wait for my entire flight’s baggage to be offloaded before finding out that my suitcase was amongst dozens of others at the end of the room.
That’s all for my first real blog entry.
Rest in Peace Grandpa
Irving Leonard Bindelglass
– Evan Bindelglass
(This entry actually published January 10, 2011, but due to time zone settings, the day is displayed as January 11, 2011.)