My father, Phillip Prever, 1942-2020

My father died shortly before midnight on Thursday. His heart was so worn out. A few hours before, he had been packing up books to send out for delivery. After that, my brother heard him praying, and decided to check on him later, not wanting to interrupt. Then my father lay down in his recliner, and then that was it. Or maybe I’ve gotten the details wrong. It’s been a long day. We are glad he didn’t have to die in a hospital, hooked up to the beeping machines he hated so much.

I used to call him on Wednesday evenings. Most of the time, I would say, “Hey, it’s Simmy.” He would say, “Hey, Sim. How’s it going?” and I would say, “Oh, fine. Are you in the middle of anything?” and he would say, “Nahhh, I’m just listening to some music.” The same conversation almost every time, but always different music.

The time before last when I called, it was Bach’s Chromatic Fantasy he was listening to. He had gotten his hands on a huge collection of LPs, and was listing them for sale one by one in his online store. For each record, he had to visually inspect it, and then listen to a few samples of both sides, to make sure it was playable. Then he could list them. But when he sampled the Bach, he didn’t pick the needle up, but let it play. 

We talked about Bach for a while, how he was a god. My father used to play that fantasy himself, at a snail’s pace, the pace of an amateur, amateur, “one who loves.” I do remember hearing him play parts of it, the halting notes filtering up through the wooden floorboards as we fell asleep. I imagined parts of it were corduroy, parts were wood, parts were curling gold. I told him he should keep the record for himself. He protested that it was a rare recording, and worth a considerable amount of money. But keep it! I insisted. Well, he said, maybe he would. 

Last time I called, the day before he died, he sounded worn out. He didn’t have much banter in him, and he didn’t want to talk much about the kids, which was unusual. He had seen my mother at the nursing home twice this week. Because of the virus, he couldn’t be in a room with her or feed her jellybeans every day like he used to, but the aides bundled her up and wheeled her onto the patio, and he talked to her six feet away, through a chain link fence. He said that he told her he loved her, and that she said “I love you” back to him, and that made him happy. He told me he loved everybody, and told me to send his love to everybody. I told him I loved him. He said he loved me, too. And then that was it. I still can’t believe that was it.

I looked for the Bach record online, and I can’t find it listed. I hope that’s because he decided to keep it, and I hope he listened one more time. 




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59 thoughts on “My father, Phillip Prever, 1942-2020”

  1. Yesterday I was buried with Thee, O Christ, and today I arise with Thine arising.

    O Christ God, with the saints grant rest to the soul of Thy servant, in a place where there is no pain, no grief, no sighing, but everlasting life.

    You and your family are in my prayers this Paschal.

  2. Prayed you and your family would have peace and comfort and that His Grace would shine on and through all of you especially your mother.

  3. I am so sorry for you and your family. As if the world weren’t already spinning enough. I’ll add prayers for you and your family, siblings and mom especially to my morning prayers. Hug your husband, your kids and your Christ tonight.

  4. Sorry for your loss. May he rest in peace, Father. The way you describe his passing, thats how my grandfather passed. No machines, no IVs, he just went to sleep in his home. (I like to think with a rosary in his hands.)

    1. My condolences to you and your family. We will keep Mr. Prever and the entire family in our prayers. God bless you.
      +Requiescat in Pace+

  5. My deepest sympathies on the loss of your dad. He clearly loved his family very much. My heart goes out to you and your family. Prayers for all of you.

  6. May the Father comfort you in your sorrow.
    Servant of God Takashi Nagai, Nagasaki bomb survivor, wrote about how orphans learn quickly not to cry because no parent is there to comfort them. But we can weep because we have Someone who hears.
    Rest in peace, Mr. Prever.

  7. Simcha, I am so sorry to hear this. I lost my own father in November 2019. No matter how old you get a parent is a parent. Please know you and all your loved ones are in my prayers and the prayers of all the sisters here.

  8. Simcha, I am so sorry. My deepest sympathy to you and your family – and your father: lux perpetua luceat ei.

  9. So sorry to hear of this!
    I know you, your children, your siblings and their families—many tears are being shed by sooo many who loved him….but I know you are also so grateful for all of the wonderful memories through the years!! He sounds like an extra special husband, father, and grandfather!

  10. So sorry for your loss, Simcha. Beautiful article. I’m familiar with your Mom’s delightful story from “Honey From the Rock.” Want to learn more about your dad, now. Praying for the repose of his soul and for your family.

  11. Simcha thank you for sharing your father with us over the years. He sounds like a beautiful man and father who lived his faith. My condolences on a great loss.

  12. Sending my condolences from Germany I want to assure you of my deepest sympathy. I lost my own father three weeks ago; he was in a hospital, but death came surprinsingly quick, so he also didn’t end up dependant on machines. But I also cannot believe, that our last sentences were the last in this earthly world. So I can imagine what you feel and that, believing in God an in his mercy, you are still sad.

    Thank God we know Jesus, and he is making everything new!

    God bless

    Felix Honekamp

  13. My deepest sympathy. I’ll pray for him as well as for you and your family during this difficult time. God bless.

  14. I’m so sorry Simcha. I lost my father four years ago, and never could have imagined the unique pain of losing a parent. You were blessed that you were able to speak with him the night before he died. I’m praying for your family.

  15. I’m truly sorry for your loss but share your thankfulness that such an obviously lovely soul died surrounded by his family. Even tho they weren’t actually paying attention….he heard the family sounds and drifted off after saying prayers. That’s lovely.

    God bless and console you.

  16. Praying for and with your family. May God bless and keep your Abba, and comfort those of you whom he loved so deeply.

  17. I’m so sorry to hear this Simcha. Eternal Rest In Peace. Deepest condolences to
    You and your loved ones. To your mother. Will keep you all in our prayers. Hope your dear father can intercede for mankind To Our Father, right now. Blessings.

  18. Sympathies for you and your family! Your writings are refreshing and often convicting. Thank you for sharing.

  19. Oh, I’m so sorry. Prayers for you and your whole family. I’ve always loved any pictures you posted of him, just glorying in the family love.

  20. Simcha, I am so, so sorry for your loss. I’ll be praying for you and your family as you grieve, and for the repose of you father’s soul.

  21. O Simcha, I’m so sorry. Eternal rest grant to Philip O Lord and may your perpetual light shine upon him. Mary, mother of the Blessed Sacrament, please console your daughter Simcha and all whom mourn this sad loss+

  22. Oh, Simcha, I am so very sorry to hear about your father. I will be keeping him, you, and all who love him in my prayers! May the peace of Our Comforter lift you and hold you closely as you mourn.

    Eternal rest grant unto Phillip, O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May the souls of the faithful departed, through the mercy of God, rest in peace.

    1. I really enjoy your blog; I liked very much when they included mention of your father. I can tell from the pictures I’ve seen that he was a wonderful man. I will light a yahrzeit candle for him. May he rest in peace!

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