There is a burning question
buried deep inside us.

How could you let this happen to me?

Back to Tonic
After everyone had patted me on the head and assured me Jake was in a better place, after all the cards had been read, after all the support had been given, I had to go home. I had to go on. I had to clean out his room. Do you know how hard it is to dismantle the accumulation of a fourteen-year-old boy’s life? What do I do with the rabbit’s foot, the sea shells and the lucky coin key chain found with other treasures he kept hidden away in a cigar box? This stuff would ordinarily be junk, but now it seems so precious. How do I throw out anything with his hand writing on it? What do I do with the tooth found carefully stored in the cigar box? That tooth is the only thing I have left of him to hold.

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ISBN: 978-1-939761-16-3

I entered the 1980's a content man
with a wife I adored and children I cherished;
all was right with God.

Back to Tonic is the true story of the life and tragic death of my adored son; but even more, it's the story of my long journey back to peace with God. It is a raw account of the horror and heartbreak that consumed me in the years that followed. Struggling to grasp the image of an Almighty God who seemed to have stood motionless on the sidelines, I hit rock bottom. But it was here that I learned what it truly meant to have God be my rock.
Grief was only complicated by a simple answer to a complex question; "Everything happens for a reason," offered little comfort. Instead it threw me into a pit of desperation where I struggled to discover a "reason” good enough to take in trade for the life of my much loved son. I didn't need philosophy, I needed help.
At the age of six He somehow knew there was a consequence of sin
and that forgiveness came through Jesus Christ.
Once he asked, “How far is heaven from hell?” I asked why and he said
he wanted to know if he’d be able to talk to the people who
weren’t coming to heaven.

When Jacob entered junior high Jan recognized that he was getting older and kissing “his Mom” good bye in front of his friends at school probably wouldn’t be considered cool. She told him that if it made him feel uncomfortable he didn’t have to kiss her. Jacob leaned across the seat, kissed her on the cheek, and made a point of doing so every day.

He was the boy
I always wanted to be.

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have questions please email me.