Monday, March 30, 2009

How To Impress Your Famous Pastor

In April 1998 we were between churches and attended a mid week bible study at Saddleback Church because our son, Rick, was singing a solo for it that night. Tom Holladay was leading the study every Wednesday night to about 1,800 people and we decided to start attending Saddleback Church. Tom is Rick Warren’s brother-in-law. An excellent teacher of the bible.

It is not easy to find a time to meet Rick Warren and let him know who you are. At the time probably 15,000 people attended the weekend services. Mr. Warren had not yet written his book, “The Purpose Driven Life” which made millions of dollars for his personal use and made him known world wide.

A few years later we were asked by the Executive Pastor, Glen Kreun, for a favor. Pastor Glen’s in-laws lived on our street and he asked us to bring his mother-in-law to a wedding reception of his step-son’s as she was the grandmother of the groom. We weren’t invited to the wedding but he wanted us to bring the grandmother who we knew. We said ok and made arrangements for taking her to the party.

As you can imagine, most of the guests were from Saddleback Church and we didn’t know most of them. But we can fit in just about anywhere and was assigned a table with some of the staff of the church including Pastor Warren's daughter Aimee.

I wanted to check out the buffet line and while there, Senior Pastor Rick Warren also checked it out. We were alone and I went up to him and introduced myself. I said “Hi - I’m Dick Moore and I attend Saddleback Church. Who are you?” He doubled over with laughter and so did a number of guests who heard what I said. Mr. Warren then introduced himself to me and we had a nice chat.

Everybody knows who Rick Warren is because of his high profile as founding pastor of one of the nations largest churches. He is even more known since his book has been published. As we all know, he was asked by Barack Obama to offer the invocation at the inaugural of the new president of the United States this year.

I know who Rick Warren is but he still doesn’t know who Dick Moore is. Small world isn’t it?

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Here I am - Back On Line!

UPDATE #2 - 3-27-09

Yesterday we received a call from the surgeon's office to say that he wanted us there at 9:30 a.m. this morning. He usually isn't in the office on Friday but he wanted us to get the information as soon as possible. The doctor told us that I have Usual Interstitial Pneumonia which basically says that they don't know what I have. This is not a definitive diagnosis but a collection of diseases that don't have answers. Both the surgeon and the pulmonologist that we saw at 1:30 p.m. are wanting me to go to UCLA Medical Center to a specialized clinic and doctors who do nothing but work with these type of diseases. They have already faxed the tests and will be sending the slides that were returned from Mayo in Arizona. From now on, UCLA will be where his lung doctors are located.

I was quite allergic to the tape that was used and my chest looks as though it has been badly burned in places. This certainly added to my discomfort.

The pulmonologist did find that my oxygen blood level is higher than it was before the surgery.

The surgeon told us that some of these diseases can be helped with treatment and some cannot. Neither doctor tried to sugar coat anything but they did stress that they just don't know what it is or how to treat it until a lot more tests can be taken and those will be done at UCLA.

For those who know how to pray, I'd appreciate your prayers for a quick appointment at UCLA and peace as we make the decisions necessary in the future.

UPDATE # 1 - 3-25-09

I had an appointment with my hematologist this morning. (I have had low red blood platelets for over a year.) Today, my counts have risen to 161 which puts me in the low normal range. (It came up from 140 three months ago.) The hematologist was pleased that my immune system seemed to be kicking in.

The hematologist called the surgeon and got the results of my biopsy. I have been diagnosed with Usual Interstitial Pneumonia. When we arrived home we had a call from my pulmonologist to move my appointment from April 1st to this coming Friday, March 27, at 1:30 p.m. We are very glad that I could get in sooner.

Tomorrow I have another test at Mission Hospital. The appointment to remove the bandages at the surgeon's office remains April 1st. More UPDATES as we get more information. Thanks for checking in on this BLOG and for your prayers and concern.
First of all, I want to thank my wife, Ann, for updating you about what has been happening in the surgery and recovery. If you didn't get one from her, it's because you weren't on the huge list of emails that Ann has been sending out daily. That is the reason for the BLOG updates - to get those of you who aren't on her list. Ann has been faithful in letting you know just what has been going on. She's just returning the favor that I did in 2004 after her brain surgery and long recovery. I was updating email and even printing out the update and mailing to those who didn't have email. A lot has changed since then and many have joined the email list. So we aren't doing a mail list.

I asked our son, Rick, to update the BLOG since he has one of his own and is familiar with how it works. Thanks, Rick, for keeping it going until I could get back on. I'll take it from here.

Rick and Anne with Brenda and Scott have been wonderful in helping Ann and me through this tough time. Being with us at the hospital and now at home has been very helpful. Both families have done some shopping for us and getting our meals at home. It is great to have Hannah and Rachel with us at home to keep our spirits up by watching "Get Smart!" DVD shows. Hopefully, we can take over again in the near future and they won't have the full responsibility of helping both parents.

I came home Thursday afternoon and have had a couple of rough periods but mainly doing fine. One thing you shouldn't have is a leg cramp at 4 a.m. when you are trying to get out of the bed for a short trip. I couldn't move fast anyway but a leg cramp has a way of speeding up the process. Painful - but faster!

I won't be seeing the surgeon until April 1st (hummm - something about that day) and hopefully we will have the results of the biopsy then. They sent it out to Arizona to be analysed and figure out how to best treat what I have in my lungs. I hope they will be able to get the bandages off then. Immediately after the visit, we see the lung doctor who is one floor down from the surgeon.

This week we see our regular family doctor on Monday and my blood doctor on Wednesday. So many doctors! These are routine and not particularly related to the surgery. In fact, the blood doctor doesn't even know about it yet. I see him every three months to keep the counts in the right place.

I am able to get around the house now by myself and even did a lot of the breakfast set up today. Any updates I will have on this BLOG will be done here on this posting. Check back to see if there are any new information as we go along.

Thanks for your concern and your prayers. They mean a lot to me and to Ann. We'll get through this.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Dick's Surgery Update 3

This is Dick's son Rick again. I should have posted this earlier but Dad came home from the hospital on Thursday afternoon. He's still pretty weak but is slowly recovering. He's not happy about being limited in his activities for a bit, but that's the way it goes after surgery.

He'll probably post the next item in a day or so.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Dick's Surgery Update 2

This is from Ann Moore:
It was a long day today but Dick was looking better tonight. He was able to get up and take about three little walks today. He is off of the morphine which will help a lot. He was very tired all day and slept quite a bit because they woke him up about every hour during the night.

He is on breathing treatments every four hours and every hour he has to use the little breathing machine that many of you are familiar with if you have been in the hospital. It is to keep him from developing pneumonia. He coughs a lot when he uses it but the surgeon said it was what was expected and needed.

The doctor decided to take him off of oxygen because he wants him to consciously take deeper breaths even if they hurt. His color was greatly improved tonight.

We may not have the results of the biopsies until next Wednesday because the pulmonologist said that it would be sent to Arizona for a final decision regarding what he is dealing with.

He will be unable to drive as long as he needs to take pain medication. Rick and Brenda are helping me a great deal. They both spent the better part of today with me. Rick takes me there and brings me home. He drives our car so that he has access to my wheelchair.

They are making sure that I have meals and they are a great source of comfort to Dick. I felt MUCH better about his situation tonight. He has some wonderful care givers. We really like the surgeon and the pulmonologist.

He knows that people are praying for him and it means so much to him.
Thank you so much for being there for us.

I will probably not be able to answer all of the emails but please know that they are read, appreciated and sent on to Dick's computer for when he gets home.

Thank you for being there.
Ann Moore

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Surgery Update

This is Dick's son Rick. He asked me to update you on his surgery this morning.

All seems to have gone fairly well. The surgeon found that his lungs are pretty inflamed as expected. They took three biopsies from his right lung and we're now waiting to hear what the cause of the problems might be.

The surgeon was fairly optimistic that based on past situations like this that a treatment regime could be identified, and that there was a good chance for a full recovery. We'll know more once the final diagnosis comes in.

Dad finally got to his room at 3:30 pm. He's in quite a bit of pain and is very tired, but all of that is expected. Hopefully he'll have a restful night tonight and will be able to go home tomorrow. He probably won't be moving much in the coming days, but home is better than a hospital bed.

CORRECTION: He won't be going home on Wednesday. The pulmonologist will make the call but it's looking more like 3 or 4 days in the hospital.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Doctors!

Well - it wasn’t really funny. We went to see the pulmonologist regarding the symptoms that I have been having for some time. In the last couple of weeks I have had a CT SCAN, Pulmonary Function Test, a lot of blood tests, saw my eye doctor and he wanted me to see a specialist because he saw something in my left eye that didn’t look right.

The eye is no problem. Everything came out on the pictures fine and I don’t have to worry about that at all.

However, the pulmonologist reviewed the CT SCAN and wanted me to see a surgeon right away for a biopsy of my lung. He is concerned with pulmonary fibrosis or something of that nature. There appears to be a lot of inflamation and the lungs also have a lot of apparent scarring and other problems.

He sent us to make an appointment with a thoraxic surgeon and we will see him Friday at 10:30 a.m. The surgeon is not normally there on Fridays but agreed to come in to see me. The pulmonologist said that I will be in the hospital for 4 days. They need to go through my side to make the biopsy.

I am also dealing with a problem with my throat that is not related to the lung but has been caused by the coughing. I am not to talk and I have some medications to help this situation.

I will use this posting on my BLOG for updates as we go along. Please check it often to see what is going on. This is the best way to keep all of you up to date.

Yes, I would appreciate your prayers and Ann would also. Rick & Brenda will be taking care of Ann during my time of recovery.

UPDATE # 1 (3-13-09) Just got back from a day of meetings for the surgery. Met with the surgeon, Dr. Ledford Powell, who came in from surgery just to give me the counsoltation. Surgery is set up for Tuesday 3-17-09 at 9: 30 a.m. at Saddleback Hospital. He said the stay will be only overnight and I should be released by noon on Wednesday. Then had the pre-registration for the surgery. More blood lab work and an EKG. Then a talk to the admitting nurse covering all the fine points of visiting the hospital. We got there at 10:30 a.m. and was out about 2:00 p.m. So a long day. Our son went with us to help with the wheelchair for Ann and to listen in on what is going on. I will have three lung biopsies all on the right lung. They are entering with two incisions - one for the camera and one for the surgery. Through the ribs. Sounds like fun! Of course I won't know anything. More updates when I am able to write.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

I Know I Know Him! But How?

Have you ever been in a crowd and see someone who you think you know but can’t bring forth his/her name or circumstances that you know them? This happened to me a couple of weeks ago at a memorial service at Saddleback Church. In the Plaza Room where the service was to be done Ann and I went to the far side in order to get room for her electric scooter next to the rows of chairs. Just before the service started, I looked at the row behind me and over to the aisle. There was a man sitting on the aisle that I knew I had seen him and thought maybe I had even met him somewhere but couldn’t bring it forward. I asked Ann and she said he sure was familiar too but couldn’t think who it might be.

All during the service I kept going through my “filing cabinets” of my brain trying to figure this out. So when the service was over, I made tracks to catch him and find out how I knew him.

Well, his name is Bob Johnson and he was the football coach at El Toro when the son of the deceased was there. He moved over to Mission Viejo High School and has been there for a number of years. How did I know him? By seeing him on the field through my binoculars! I told him I didn’t think I had met him but he was very familiar and I needed to know where I had seen him. He was very nice about it. I told him my connection to the football games was through my grandchildren who played in the Marching Band. We attend all the games because the band did the half time show.

Another related story happened a few years ago. At one of the football games, I was standing in the back at the top of the stairs in the stadium and started talking to a man just making conversation. I told him I had a grandchild in the band and asked if he was there because of the band or football. He said football. I guess I should have known who he was because of the number 6 on his cap but it didn’t register. He was Mark Sanchez’s dad. Mark was the quarterback who eventually went to USC and last year was the quarterback for that great football team. Mark has since let himself be eligible for the football draft and will undoubtedly be picked up by a team for many bucks.

You never know who you are talking to!

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Would You Like To Be A Part Of History?

This BLOG is about my life and is being written for my family and long time friends to remember Ann and me. Do you know your great grandparents? Most know their grandparents but not their great grandparents.

My grand kids will be coming into the time they will have families of their own and I want their kids to know who their great grandparents were. That is my motivation to write these stories. It's OK for you to read them too even though you are not family or have known us a long time. Some of these stories will bring back memories of yours that you may wish to share with others.

Now about that history part -- if you have a comment, please feel free to write something on any of the stories whether it reminds you of something in your past or you just enjoyed it. All Comments are printed off as well as the stories for the book I am making for the family. So -- you can be a part of that history!

If you want to set up a Google account it is very simple. On the Comment page you can follow directions to do that. Posting a picture with your account will show you and your comment whenever you write something. If you do not want to set up an account -- that's OK too. Just move the dot to the Anonymous line and click publish. Be sure to type your name at the end of the comment so I will know who wrote it.

I'd love to hear from you. And you can be a part of history in the process.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Small College Advantages - Part D 1955-1956

This is the last of a series of five postings. If you haven’t read the previous four, please do so now before reading this story.

D. Senior Year 1955-1956

The summer of 1955 up to July 22nd was spent working full time (wasn’t I already doing that?) at the book store. I took my earned vacation and drove back to Kansas City to be married. I left on a Friday night after work and drove continuously until I could no longer see straight. Stopped in Kansas for a three hour nap and continued on to Kansas City. It’s a wonder I got there at all. But we do crazy things sometimes and this I can chalk up to one of those.

Dick & Ann Moore - Married July 22, 1955 in Kansas City, Missouri

After the wedding, we spent our honeymoon driving back to California by way of Colorado. When we arrived back home in Pasadena, we began our life in a duplex at the corner of Carmelo and White. This was owned by one of the teachers at the college and Ann’s traveling sponsor/speaker the previous summer. The duplex was furnished and water paid. It had a kitchen (small), living room, bedroom, and bath. No garage. But it was home to us and we loved it. Paid $45 a month which was a lot considering I made $200 gross a month.

Dick Moore standing at the door of our duplex on Carmelo in Pasadena, CA.

Ann Moore at our front door of the duplex 1956

Ann had a job lined up to work for an insurance company office to help support as I continued to work at the book store. Well, she actually worked for one half a day! Came home very sick and was unable to return to work. Seems that she was pregnant with Ricky and for the next 3 months was too sick to do much of anything. So our married life is off and running at a much slower pace than we had planned. We thought I would be making $200 a month at the book store and she would be making $200 a month at the insurance agency. Now that is cut in half and an addition to the family was going to make an appearance within a few months.

I was in my senior year of college and taking 16 units to complete my studies for graduation. With a very sick wife and a baby coming, my thought went to supporting my family instead of finishing college. Ann’s parents, Robert and Mildred Edwards, came to our aid and told me they would pay the last year’s tuition if I would work and support the family. So that is how I was able to make it financially through my last year of college. We will be forever grateful to them for helping us get through this difficult year.

To me, college was my passport to the future and I needed to complete that if I was ever going to accomplish anything in this life. With taking a full load of studies and working full time as well, this left little time to be a part of the college community. I was not in sports or any clubs. I was living off campus and had little time to socialize outside of our home.

Dave Cole had a part time job of music minister at Central Church of the Nazarene in Pasadena. He got three other guys and a piano player forming a church quartet that sang every Sunday evening. I was the bass and Dave was the first tenor. Each of the guys (except Dave) were paid $5 a week for that one song. Dave got more since he was in charge of the entire music program. The $5 came in very handy and we enjoyed singing together.

My yearbook that year had no signatures or comments written by other school attendees. Apparently I didn’t have time to stick around after I got the book. Since I lived off campus and was married with a child here at the time the book was available, I had things to do that didn’t include finding people to sign my book. I regret that I didn’t get any but that’s life.

My sister, Faye, was a freshman this year at PNC. She appeared in three pictures in the yearbook other than her class picture for activities she was in. She was at the school only one year, my senior year. She attended Whittier College but didn’t graduate. Ann appeared in one of the pictures of the crowd at a basketball game. I was sitting next to her but wasn’t in the picture. Ann was wearing maternity clothes. I just had my senior class picture in the book. At this point I was ready to move on.

Richard Robert Moore born in Pasadena, California. Picture taken in hospital.

On April 10, 1956, our family grew by one with the addition of Richard Robert Moore. This was two months before my graduation. I attended the Senior Retreat in Big Bear as my last social contact with the college students before graduation.
Graduation Day picture of Dick Moore June 1956

Attending and graduating from Pasadena Nazarene College was a highpoint of my life. I met many friends that have become life long friends. Being in the Nazarene church for many years and singing in the Watchmen Gospel Quartet in Nazarene churches, brought me in contact with many of the people I knew at college. Last year I wrote an article about what my freshman year was compared to my granddaughter Emily’s 55 years later. You can read that article here.

Through the years we have attended a number of class reunions held at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego. The first one was our 25th. Other reunions were the 30th, 35th, 45th, and the big one - 50th. In November 2006, Dave and Marlene Cole and Dick and Ann Moore attended together the Golden Anniversary of Dick & Dave’s graduation. There were 27 of the 111 in the graduating class of 1956 that attended. It was great to see them again and remember “The Good Old Days” of college. Many of these people had changed so much they didn’t even recognize me!
Here are some pictures from the 50th College Graduation Anniversary held in 2006.
Old Friends - Dick Moore and Dave Cole. Spent four years in college together and a lifetime keeping in touch with each other's families.

Dick Moore, Ross Irwin and Lyle Pritchard. Ross was very active with the college alumni.

Dave Cole, Keith & Sheila Holly. Sheila was still working for the university then.

Dave & Mert Jones. Dave was a member of the Shoremen Quartet from Long Beach for many years. Mert was my first date in my freshman year and a regular at our morning breakfast.

Years ago the alumni sold bricks for the "Alumni Walk" with your name and year of graduation. Here's mine.

Thanks for coming along with me on this memory tour of my college days. Hope you enjoyed reading these postings.