Following the recent passing of my father, Danie Fourie, his grandchildren wrote beautiful tributes to honour their beloved Grandpa, which I felt were well worth sharing…
The first memory I have of my Grandpa is fishing at the beach. He would wake Caitlin and me up early in the morning with coffee, and then we would get dressed and go to the beach. I would hardly ever fish though, because I was too young and too impatient to wait for the fish to come to me. But we would walk along the beach and he would introduce me to all his friends and I was just happy to be with my Grandpa.
When I was older he gave me a lot of fishing gear, and I loved it. My friend and I went fishing and I was so proud to show him all the fishing equipment I got from my Grandpa.
If Grandpa wasn’t fishing then he was in his garage busy making something or fixing something. He had a real talent for carpentry. He showed me all his tools, and how each one worked. And even though I never had the same interest that he did, he never forced me to be like him.
Grandpa had a very good heart, and was a very friendly person, always making friends with people on the way down in the lift. He was always offering to make curry for friends, or make something in his garage for them.
He was well liked at the flat where they lived. When other children who lived there found out that Oom Danie was my Grandpa, they got excited, and said, “Wow, is that your Grandpa!”
We always knew where Grandpa was because he would always make a lot of noise. From stirring the coffee cups in such a way that we knew he was making coffee again, to singing wherever he went.
He wasn’t a fighter, he was a lover. For those he loved, he would do anything, and he loved a lot of people.
The last memory I have of my Grandpa is reading Psalm 23 to him while he was lying in hospital. That memory is one I will always remember. Only God can make the passing of a loved one a special occasion. It didn’t matter how different we were, how similar we were, or the age difference, we shared the same God. Being able to share Psalm 23 with my Grandpa is extremely special, and I thank God that I was able to do that.
My Grandpa will be missed, but I have peace, knowing that God is alive. God is still with me, and Grandpa is with God.
The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
You’re gone now, gone but not forgotten. And I can’t say this to your face but I know you hear…
I know we are all feeling a little bit sad,
That we’ve lost our Grandpa, our friend and our Dad
Together we have cried an ocean of tears
As we feel so empty and hold many fears.
But Grandpa would want us to know he’s in a good place
And that he’s watching us all with a smile on his face.
As we have made him so proud, as proud as can be
That he has raised such a beautiful and special family.
Thinking back now I really must say
I feel lucky and privileged to have known Grandpa to this day.
For in my life you have played a special part,
The memories I will treasure and keep close to my heart.
For me, I’m glad my little baby he got to meet
And for all of us, be grateful, his life is now complete.
For each one of us he has loved and cared
As a family, be thankful for the good times we shared.
Although he has gone we will always be together
And his spirit will live on in each one of us forever.
When you look to the sky, look for the brightest star
As that will be Grandpa, looking down on us from afar.
And now I’d like to thank the good Lord above
For blessing us with our Grandpa, his kindness and love.
Dear God, if it’s not too much fuss
Take extra-special care of our Grandpa, as he’s very dear to us
Grandpa, if you’re listening, say a prayer for us every day,
Be sure to protect us and guide us on our way.
We know when God called you, you had to go, but we want you to know
Grandpa, we love and miss you so.
Love always, your Little Princess.
Daniel Fourie meant different things to different people. He was a husband, a father, a brother, an uncle and even a dear friend, but to me he was simply known as Grandpa. And I have been truly blessed to be his granddaughter.
My Grandpa had special nicknames for all his grandkids and my special nickname was Tinkerbell. I will never forget the way he said “Tinkerbell” when he saw me coming towards him; there was a ring in his voice and a smile on face that left no doubt in your mind that, at least for that moment, you were the centre of his world. No matter which grandchild you were Grandpa had the uncanny ability to make you feel like you were the most important kid in his life.
He had a special relationship with all his grandkids and I will always treasure the relationship I had with my Grandpa. Together we shared a love for singing, and whenever he saw me, even in his very old age he would always say “Sing for me, Tinkerbell” and he would join in later and together we would sing for ages.
My Grandpa and I loved the beach and he would take me there every day and he would show me all the little sea creatures, point out all the different shells and keep them in his pocket so that I could take them home.
My Grandpa always had patience and unconditional love for us. He once showed me a bucket of fish he had just caught. When he wasn’t looking I took the bucket of fish, along with all his hard work and threw them back into the ocean. When he saw that all his fish were free he just looked at me, smiled and said: “Only my Tinkerbell would think about saving the fish.” And he took my hand and we walked back home.
My Grandpa taught me what true love meant when he, without fail, would wake me and my granny up with coffee every morning and before going to bed bring the entire family vanilla milkshakes and come and tuck me in; he had a special way of tucking me in. My grandpa and I loved to bake, from cookies to Chelsea buns to different kinds of breads. He would give me the credit when the end product tasted good, but we all knew that he did most of the work and I was there more for moral support.
My Grandpa was very good at making things and he loved making things for his grandchildren. He made me my very own personal oven, a dollhouse with furniture and cot for all my extra dolls.
All my friends admired my Grandpa. I was so proud that he was my Grandpa and I was his Tinkerbell and that will never change. Even though he is no longer with us I know that he is finally at peace and I will never forget all the memories I shared with my Grandpa and the life lessons that he taught me. I will always carry with me.
Love you always,
Grandpa, you are my soldier and idol. I love you to the moon and back, and always will do.
Your Chaddy boy