The Tie that Binds

Blest be the tie that binds.Image of Orville

Our hearts in Christian love;

The fellowship of kindred minds.

Is like to that above.


Before our Father’s throne,

We pour our ardent prayers;

Our fears, our hopes, our aims are one,

Our comforts, and our cares.


We share our mutual woes,

Our mutual burdens bear;

And often for each other flows

The sympathizing tear.


When we asunder part,

It gives us inward pain;

But we shall still be joined heart,

And hope to meet again.

I think some of you will know exactly what I mean when I say that my heart is sorrowfully heavy and full of joy–all at the same time.

I lost my 91 year-old father this week.  I’m sad that our family doesn’t have pictures of the times I remember most from my childhood…my dad in our garage, fixing the brakes of my bike so I could ride to the pool – or dad pulling our boat around for the hundredth time to try to get me up on skis, or of him hitting the throttle and telling me when to pull the plug as we drained our boat, or of him directing me and my sisters to help put up our tent on a hot afternoon when we were NOT happy campers AT ALL.  Memories are precious.

In these last 13 months, while he struggled with his health, my sisters and I got to see Dad again–the witty, silly, playful side of him. He was an endearing man who softened the hearts of his caregivers and doctors when they figured out he was messing with them.

I am full of joy and forever grateful that not only did my dad have faith, he asked, “Where am I?” and answered peacefully, “Heaven” as he passed. Few of us get such confirmation at the end of our loved one’s life. When I start to focus on the doubts and questions of what could have been, I remember that incredible “God Wink” given to us at Dad’s death.


This is supposed to be a blog about quilting and there are so many analogies I could make that use quilt themes to describe family and loved ones and friendships. Instead, I’ll leave a few pictures of the man I called dad. And thank you, friends, for allowing me to share with you.Image of Willie with QOV
Image of Willie

Dad acting silly with his cap.

Image of Dad and MomImage of Willie and WWII capImage of Willie and Karla

Image of Orville Wichern

Orville J. (Willie) Wichern
1926 – 2018


  1. Nancy Pleimann

    I loved the pictures and the times you said about your Dad. Take care. Love Ya , Nancy

  2. Merle Deneke

    What an absolute wonderful tribute to your loved one. Receive peace from your memories

  3. Julie

    So sorry for your loss Carla.

  4. Pat Smith

    What a wonderful memorial. I’m sure he would be pleased.

  5. Nancy Kiefner

    What a sweet tribute to your dad. Y’all are in our thoughts and prayers

  6. Corena Ressel

    I know the feeling of bittersweet. When we see them go joyfully to the Lord we are truly blessed. Prayers for you and family.

  7. Patrician Leech

    So wonderful you had some very precious moments and memories with your Dad. He is in God’s care now with no pain or suffering. Hold on to those precious memories and love for your Dad. God bless you and your family during your time of loss. You have and Angel looking after you dear friend.

  8. Donna

    So very sorry for your loss, dear Karla! Sunset on Earth, Sunrise in Heaven…

  9. Mary Caldwell

    We’re blessed that you shared your cherished memories of your dad. I recall you talking about him years ago and I know you’ll miss him. Very sorry for you and your family. Prayers to you all.🙏

  10. Marylee Hpehn

    Sympathy to you and your family. His home was my home away from home when I moved to P’ville. RIP Willie. You deserve it!

  11. Linda Gast

    A beautiful memory. I know you will miss him terribly but take comfort from the fact that you know exactly where your Dad is tonight.

  12. Connie Starr

    I have memories if you Dad being silly with us kids and so,so patient trying to pull me up on water skies. I finally got it at age 36! I am happy you and your sisters had those months with him to re connect and enjoy each other’s company. Blessings for your family.

  13. Cheryl Tuschhoff

    A wonderful tribute to your Dad! Sorry for your loss, Karla.

  14. Betty Brooks

    I’m so sorry for the loss of your precious dad, Karla. Our thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

  15. Rosie Conrad

    The parting words mean everything. How special to have heard that blessed assurance he is there now. Precious memories and love you have he took with him, also. Keep smiling with the memories that will keep you tied together. Prayers and love.

  16. Sandy Hinton

    What beautiful memories you have of your dad. They will bring you comfort in the days ahead. Blessings.

  17. Deborah Creel Haviland

    What a beautiful tribute that’s brought me tears, smiles and a reminder to call my daddy. Sending love and hugs to you and your family through cyberspace.

  18. Netsie

    My heart is heavy for you and your family! Great tribute!

  19. Nancy Woods

    I’m so sorry for your loss, Karla, but also so very glad that you KNOW how happy he is now, and you will always have your wonderful memories of him to keep you going.

  20. Sharon Rios

    You have such an amazing way with words….Dad was amazed with all of your quilting & enterprising….he said were quite a “thinker” to do all of that.

  21. Mary L Green

    My dear karla….your father shared the best part of himself with you….his life! I wish you peace during your time of loss. He lives forever in your heart.

  22. Shirley Richardson

    So sorry for your loss. Keep those memories of the good times.

  23. Cookie

    Karla so sorry for the loss of your Father. May he Rest In Peace.

  24. David Meyer

    So very sorry for your loss a dad is a special thing

  25. The Bee

    Thanks so much, Cookie.

  26. The Bee

    Thank you, Shirley.

  27. The Bee

    Thank you, Dave.

  28. The Bee

    Thanks, Miss Mary.

  29. The Bee

    Thanks, Sharon, I love hearing the things he’s told you over the last year.

  30. The Bee

    Thank you, Nancy!

  31. The Bee

    Thanks, Nets.