Some connections are truly special, and for Julie Pickette and her Papa, Dave, their connection was as special as they come. They had this bond that began when Julie was very young, and it was a bond they held until Dave’s final moments.
Papa loved his granddaughter so much, and he was always there for her. He was there for Julie’s sister just as much, but the connection between Julie and Dave was something else.
He was always showing up to the restaurants she worked at to try her pastries and support her. He was there for her prom to see her in her dress. He was a significant part of Julie’s wedding as well, and it is said that he shed some tears when his baby girl tied the knot.
Dave’s impact on the entire family was endless as well. From the lazy river tubing incident to him giving his great grandson the nickname T4, Dave certainly loved his family and made endless memories with them.
“We really miss him at our family gatherings,” his daughter Jeanine said. “He liked to come over for game night. I tried to do game night without him, and it just wasn’t the same. He was goofy and playful. He loved playing cards. He had all these poker games we would play. Julie loved watching him play poker with the boys.”
When Julie was young, she would sometimes spend Friday nights with Papa while he was playing poker with his friends. She just loved being there and watching him in his element, as she just loved being around him.
Dave was there for Julie’s baptism, and they were both integral parts of each other’s lives from that moment. He cared so much about her, and he showed her what a true grandfather-granddaughter bond looks like, and that is irreplaceable.
“He loved his girls,” Dave’s wife Pat said. “He liked to golf with Julie. She would deliberately leave some liquor out when he was supposed to knock down his sugars. He teased Tommy too.”
Julie was always looking out for her grandpa, even when it came to slipping him drinks occasionally. Speaking of which, he got her certified to mix drinks solely so she could specialize in making his White Russians.
And then, when Julie’s son came along, the connection Dave formed with Tommy was remarkable. He loved that little boy so much and would do anything for him, just like he would do anything for his granddaughters.
“He liked to take them swimming when they were younger,” Pat said.
A lot of the memories in Dave’s family dealt with surrounding bodies of water. Whether they were in the pool or on a cruise, time with family and time spent with Dave was time well-spent.
Of course, the memories and special moments they shared are just the half of it. When you really begin to break down the relationship, it is easy to see why Julie and Dave had such a great bond. They were like two peas in a pod with complementing personalities.
“They just were fun-loving people,” Jeanine said. “They could tease one another. They had a great little rapport. They really enjoyed each other’s company.”
Dave and Julie were cut from the same cloth. They were jokesters with a true heart for family and friends, and they always found a way to be there for others. They had so much care in their hearts, and they truly cared about each other.
Everything Julie has succeeded at in life did not come without the support of her Papa. He had been there every step of the way, making sure he was supporting her. And now, the entire family knows he is looking down on her, proud as can be.
“Julie is fun-loving and loves to laugh,” Jeanine said. “He was just really, really proud of her. He would always give his granddaughters a big, big hug too.”
Family meant everything to Dave, and Julie was certainly no exception. She was like a prized possession to him, and to her, he was her lovable grandfather.
“They were good buddies,” Pat said. “Julie wasn’t so lucky playing the games against him though.”
Yet, Julie always came back and wanted to play games with Dave, and that is because she just loved her time with her Papa.
Dave was a hardworking man who was proud of his yard work. He loved anything confectionary, and he was one who avoided all politics at the table. He supported Julie during her Skills USA days, and he was her best friend.
Dave could light up any room he walked into, and he loved playing roulette with his granddaughter. He cherished his time spent with all his other family members too, and they all miss him a little more each day.
“Her papa is proud of the person she has become and is always watching over her.” – Julie’s husband Tom