We had been married for eight years and used that time to strengthen our relationship and marriage. Earlier that year, I had taken the job as Deputy Chief for the Parkland Fire Department.
I don’t think that this was a difficult pregnancy for Terry, but Chris was pretty big. As it turns out, he was born weighing 10 lbs, 14 oz. But, towards the end, Terry was growing weary from carrying him around. We did have some fun with this.
Barb and Gary lived on a dirt road in Renton. We would often drive fast down the road, trying to encourage Chris to come be with us. Many times, we could be heard saying, “Can Chris come out to play?”.
Early in the morning of the 10th, I was getting ready for work when Terry proclaimed that it was time to go to the hospital. I was already in uniform, so I quickly changed back into street clothes, bundled up my sweetie, and drove to the hospital.
The next morning at 7:47 a.m., Chris joined us.
Because of his weight, Terry had to have Chris by C-section.
I was fortunate in that I got to be with Terry while they delivered our son. I still can picture him being delivered. I was the first in our family to set eyes on him. A (big), beautiful baby boy.
When the nurse and I were moving Chris’ bassinet, my Mom came up to us. “Boy or Girl? What?”. “Guess”, I said. LOL – mom and I used to joke a lot like that.
Growing up, Chris attended Parkland First Baptist (both of our children did), and, later, Spanaway Assembly of God.
I can remember Chris making sure Pastor Buddy knew the Lord; one day when I was helping dig a side-sewer and Buddy and I were “in the trenches”, Chris walked up to us and ask Pastor Buddy if he knew Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior.
At Spanaway Assembly, Chris was involved in the Royal Rangers. I can remember the first time we went, they were playing softball. I pitched in to help and an overthrown pitch caught me in the forehead. That cut bled quite a bit before we got it stopped.
It was at Spanaway that Chris many of our “other” kids. Chris would bring his friends home, and Terry would adopt them as one of hers. Many times, we would hear, “Mom”, and it was one of our other kids.
Josh S and Josh W, Kurt, Angie, Brandon, Aaron, Bobby, Erik, Brooke, and many others come to mind.
Growing up, Chris was always into music. In fact, this interest really is evident by a letter that his sister wrote:
Chris is 16. He is my brother. His full name is Christopher Dennis Flue, but some people call him Cat in the Hat, because he wears a hat like the Cat in the Hat. Another name he has is Waldo, because he wears a hat like Waldo. Basically his name comes from the hats he wears.
Chris has a dream to become a band player with his friends Josh and Kurt because, they have a plan to become band members together. The band would be named Rip Show. The band would play Christian alternative music because that’s the kind of music they listen to and like.
He says “When I get famous I’ll dive into the audience.” He said he would let his family and friends have front row sets. He would dye his hair green, yellow, blue, etc. He would wear clothes no on else would wear. He would also be the drummer.
Don’t worry, he will finish high school.
Chris has never given up on that dream. It has changed at times. One day, when he was working as a cook, he sliced his finger. The damage prevented him from playing guitar for quite a long time. He switched from guitar to drums. But, something in his arms, similar to carpel tunnel, started limiting his ability to play drums. But, God is in control of him. His finger is still healing, but he now can play guitar once before. So, he continues to live out his dream.
One day, Chris really surprised me. “Dad, I want to go to Perry Tech to learn how to be a mechanic.” Wow, that came out of left field. Of all possible jobs, that was not one that I would have thought that Chris would choose. But, to Perry he went, and from Perry he graduated. Chris went on to be a full-time mechanic for Reno’s Auto Repair here in Yakima. He spent a lot of time working on Subaru’s. He has been my number one mechanic. Whenever I need something mechanical, he is the first one that I go to. Who would have thunk that my little boy can do this. Well, his Mom and I, of course.
Today, Chris is working for Cub Crafters, an airplane manufacturing company here, in Yakima.
My dad manufactured airplanes for Boeing. Today, Chris is following in his Grandpa’s foot steps.