Monday, July 15, 2013

In Memoriam - Jerry Merrill

My dad passed away a year ago today, July 15th, 2012. Before he died, we talked about my plans to attempt an AT thru-hike this summer. Dad was an avid outdoorsman; he would have loved to have come hiking with me if he could.

Dad left my sisters and I a pretty long list of places in Maine where he wanted his ashes spread: lakes and brooks where he fished for trout, hills where he went rockhounding, meadows where he picked blueberries. We started last summer, but it will take us a while to get through the list!

I also brought some of Dad's ashes with me on the hike. I've now spread his ashes in each of the states (except Maine) along the trail; I have some left for the top of Katahdin when (and if!) I get there.

Like I said, Dad would have loved to be out here with me. He would have fit right in. Just like all the hikers I've met along the trail, Dad was a true lover of nature, a friend to everybody, and a gentle spirit. And, in a way that seems very real to me, he has been with me...every step of the way. Here's to you, Dad! Thanks for walking with me.



  1. Some of his ashes are on the farm: in the mountain cranberry patch, under the yellow transparent apple tree and at the trout hole by the culvert. All places he liked

  2. I have been following your blog for sometime and felt compelled to write you. The tribute to your father is beautifully written. When I read it, I find myself getting welled up thinking about my wonderful parents who are no longer with us. I know your Dad would be so happy to see you fulfilling your dream and that his spirit will forever live in your heart:)

    Hope you continue to have a safe journey!

  3. Yes, Jerry would have loved to have been there with you!!
    A touching tribute~ but he is watching you, I believe~~
    Yes Be safe!