Our family mourns

We are accustomed to loss at our rescue, Homeward Bound. It is an inevitable part of what we do and so we prepare for the sadness while focusing on the joy. But this week was different. We lost one of our own, a member of our team – a true friend.


Dick Brothers, a long-time volunteer, a board member, and our Vice President had a sudden heart attack and passed away at the rescue. He was taken from us suddenly and much too soon.

Dick and his wife Jean have been involved with Homeward Bound for more than ten years. He was the kindest, smartest, most modest and soft-spoken man you will ever meet. And as our president says with love “he was the ‘honey’ for all of our ‘honey-do’s.’ ”  He literally had a hand in everything, from raising buildings and funds – to raising hope.


Our hearts go out to his wife, Jean and to his family. He is mourned by our Homeward Bound family and the entire community to which he gave so generously of his talents and time.

How we go on without him we do not yet know, but he would insist we do. I read that he was a fan of the Cat Stevens. I don’t know if it’s true; I never got a chance to ask him. But I have a feeling that gratitude for the beauty of each and every day as expressed in this hymn memorialized by Cat Stevens would express his wish for us as we attempt to carry on and ensure his legacy is sustained.

“Morning has broken like the first morning
Blackbird has spoken like the first bird
Praise for the singing, praise for the morning
Praise for them springing fresh from the world


Sweet the rains new fall, sunlit from Heaven
Like the first dewfall on the first grass
Praise for the sweetness of the wet garden
Sprung in completeness where His feet pass


Mine is the sunlight, mine is the morning
Born of the one light, Eden saw play
Praise with elation, praise every morning
God’s recreation of the new day”


Published by


I am a nascent gardener, rescuer, and photographer, chronicling the journey of the dogs at Homeward Bound Golden Retriever Rescue and Sanctuary near Sacramento, CA - and the Memorial Garden we have devoted to them.

54 thoughts on “Our family mourns”

  1. I too am so sorry for your loss. Beautiful post! A sweet soul taken too early, his legacy shall live on with Homeward Bound! Sadly he has found a Forever Home…But he still watches over everything…Keep an open eye…You’ll see!

  2. I’m so sorry…he sounds like he was a wonderful part of all that you do, and he will be missed.

  3. A beautiful tribute to a caring man. Not too many like him out there. Please accept my deepest condolences.

  4. Gentle peace and healing as you individually and collectively find your way to the new garden and all it can become, and where Dick’s spirit will continue to bless you…may other hands and hearts as generous as his own find their way to assist with your wonderful work…

  5. Such a loving tribute here. He always had a smile and a quick Hello — even on the busiest of days. So many who relied on his generous and kind spirit will be in mourning. My condolences to his family and friends.

  6. Such a beautiful blog tribute to Dick. I’m so thankful to have known him. He was an inspiration to all of us and I miss him already. Prayers for Jean and all those who loved him.

  7. What a beautiful tribute. Life on this earth is so short but comfort can be found in the beautiful life he led and the imprint he left. His Homeward Bound family was imbedded in his heart and soul. His presence will be missed but his spirit will always be felt.

  8. Ogee, I am so sorry to read this sad news about the death of your friend. Your post today is a beautiful tribute to him. What a special person he was. What you’ve written about him here is very inspiring. I’ll be thinking of you and your team at Homeward Bound. My sincere condolences and best wishes to you all.

  9. Some poems are never finished. Their beauty lives on. ( Jayne Cortez ) My deepest sympathy. Lovely tribute to this gentle and kind man.

  10. Your post was so sad to read, beautifully written and brought tears to my eyes. During these past ten months or so that I’ve followed your blog, I’ve seen him in your posts – Dick seemed like a very generous and kind-spirited person. My condolences to his wife and family, and to Homeward Bound. You’ve had a tough year – so sorry and thinking about you.

  11. I was so saddened to here of the loss of such a treasured family member in HB. He left earth where he was so loved but I truly believe his Spirit will be back watching over those beautiful Goldens and guiding everyone at HB.
    My deepest condolences to his wife and all his family.

  12. I only had the opportunity to meet Dick a few times, but he was such a warm human being and his smile was infectious. My condolences to his family and to his Homeward Bound Family. I know how this must hurt, but Dick’s legacy will continue through many hands and hearts. Hugs to you all.

  13. What a wonderful tribute to a very special part of your ‘family.’ I am very sorry for your loss but know that even ten years with such a special person was something you would have never wanted to miss. Homeward Bound moving forward would definitely be just what such a devoted volunteer would want.

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