Monday, January 26, 2009

Thanks for the support in my time of need... and now Homework!?!

Thank you to everyone that has contacted my by any means possible (and I mean any). I so appreciate all of the support that everyone has given. This has been a hard thing to go through, and I imagine that it will still be hard for a while.

Thinking though that I was going to get my mind off of things, I started to try to get cough up on my homework. Well I am in a Physics class that I started the night the my father passed away. The professor was incredible, and has let me start a week late, but as I logged into the class and started reading the book, I started thinking that this may not be such a good idea.

Work was fine, but this homework is not fine. This crap is for the birds, and I don't mean My bird.

I don't know what my problem is, but I guess I am supposed to know how to "Calculate the magnitude of the force between two 3.60-uC point charges 9.3 cm apart"... Whoda What?

Anyway, I am just about ready to throw this book out into the big freaking ugly pile of snow out on my driveway that I got stuck in again this morning. Then after that I am going to call my university and demand my money back because this education sucks! Shoot, they assume that I know this stuff already, Why in the world would I be in this class if I already knew how to do it??? Tell me that!

Anyway, maybe I need a little sleep, but this is insane!

Thanks though for your support with the passing of my dad, now I just need support of another kind...;)

Life History of Paul E Liston

This is the talk that I gave at the funeral on Saturday.

• Paul Earl Liston was born on September 19, 1956 to Verdin and Marie Liston
o September is during the pine nut season, and if you know the Listons and their pine nuts, then you would know that Verdin was out back working the pine nut sorting and counting machines.
o When my grandma felt like it was time to go to the hospital, she had to call Sandra, my dad’s oldest sister to drive her to the hospital because there was no interrupting a Liston while working in the pine nuts.
• Paul as a first name was decided upon because his mother liked it.
• Earl came from Paul’s uncle Earl Saxton, and Grandma Liston said that Paul E Liston just sounded like a good strong name.

• Paul is the youngest of seven children:
o Sandara
o Sherril
o Elaine
o Larry
o Joyce
o Janice
o Paul

• Paul grew up on 800 east in Orem and often participated in the many family businesses that he could participate in
o For many years the family sold Christmas trees all over the valley.

• Before Paul even started school he had already started his own money making scheme. He would go around and gather left-over bunches and Christmas tree limbs and sell them as Christmas decorations to the customers.
• His siblings said that he made a lot of money for his age.
o Another family business that they worked in almost every year was Pine nuts.
• Paul would always help to sell the family pine nuts, and did a great job in sales.
• When he was off of his mission he started driving a large semi truck picking up and delivering the pine nuts to the Orem yard. That truck is how I got one of these scars on my forehead.

• Paul has always been a faithful member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
o At a young age he regularly attended the adult Sunday school and relief society classes, and was also faithful visiting teacher because everywhere that his mother went, Paul was by her side.
o When Paul was about 5, the Provo temple was just being built. He wanted to be a part of the beautiful building, so he donated $5.00 to the temple fund to help in the lords work.
o When he was a young boy there was a drought when lots of ward members prayed and fasted for rain. The next day Paul was seen out walking in his raincoat and boots, getting ready for the rain. His faith was always incredible both as a child and as an adult.

• Paul attended Hillcrest Elementary School in south Orem
o In Paul’s own words he agreed that he wasn’t the best student, but he sure loved school.
o His favorite teacher was Mr. Rogers – He taught the students how to play games at recess and became more of a friend to his students than just a teacher.
o He was not one to do a lot of reading, but he did own every Dr. Seuss book that he knew about.
o While he was in elementary school he had a favorite red shirt. In fact he loved it so much that his mother said that he wore it every day to school. She had to wash it out every night so that he could wear a clean red shirt to school. It is no surprise to us though; he has always been a practical and determined man.
o Paul always excelled at everything that he did. One day one of his teachers asked him to find as many words that he could out of the word Constantinople. He asked everyone to help and ended up founding the most words out of anyone in his class. He always wanted to be the best at everything that he did

• At age 12 Paul started helping the family by working with the Utah Trail Builders company (composed mostly of Liston family)
o They worked on many trails in different western states including:
o Washington, Oregon, Montana, Idaho, California, Colorado, Utah
• Pacific Crest Trail in California and Washington
• Aspen Grove and American Fork Timpanogos trail

• In high school Paul was known by everyone by his nick-name; pine tree
o Paul was very likable and had many friends. He was elected as Senior Class President at Orem High School for the graduating class of 1975
o He was a state record holder in track-and-field for the shot-put, and was considered a star on the Track and Field team of Orem High.
o Along with these great achievements, Paul also played the trumpet in the Orem High School band, and ended up competing for first chair against John Davis, and Kirt Bestor. This was motivation enough to keep my dad practicing daily to be the best dang trumpet player in the school.

• Paul Liston was called to server an LDS mission in the Pittsburgh Pennsylvania mission where he was influential in teaching the gospel to many families.
o There was one contact in particular that puts the Liston name just one step closer to the movie stars. Paul and his companion spent many hours in the home of Christina Aguilera’s mother. The family continued to send him Christmas cards for several years after his mission.
o It was on his mission that Paul gained a very firm testimony of the reality of the presence of the Holy Ghost. This became an anchor to help him with future decisions throughout his lifetime.

• In 1978 Paul married Alisa in the Provo Temple. Paul and Alisa are the parents of 5 children. Each of which has shared their favorite memories about their father, which I would like to share with you starting with myself…

o Bryan is the happiest child of the bunch, and was always the gadget wiz kid.
• I will always remember working with my dad down at the wood shop and at A&P Craft. He gave me a job when I was 10 just doing simple things around the shop and store. I loved how he always made the atmosphere inside professional and still playful and fun.
• I remember one of my favorite stories was during a Christmas party with the employees. He was being handed a couple presents to unwrap, and one of them was a tin of Oreo cookies, or so it seemed. As he went to pull the lid off of the tin he screamed a choice word or two dropped the tin on the ground and jumping into the air. Two little rats then jumped for safety as they were so poorly introduced to their new owner.
• We had rats for a couple years after that little prank, and they weren’t as bad as they seemed, but the tails of those guys always seemed to gross my dad out after that day.
• My dad was an awesome manager though. As the boss he demanded the respect of all his employees, but he also gave that same respect to each one of them, making them feel important in their own ways.
• I am so grateful that I have been able to spend time with my dad both in the home and in the work place. He has taught me many lessons in life, religion, and business. I hope that I can continue to make him proud in my future decisions.

o Mark is the hardest worker in the family and one of my dad’s best friends
• The best memories that I have are the ones of the fishing excursions up to Alaska when we were younger. Grandpa Liston (Verdin) Paul, my older brother Bryan and then me, Mark. Our first trip up there I learned a lot about Paul and how adventurous he really was and no matter what happened it was always a good trip whether we brought fish home or not it was all about the experience and the time that we all spent together. Paul loved to go see new places and explore new things, whether it was a glacier or a mountain or a trail Paul always wanted to see everything that he could and get a picture of it while we were there so that he could share the memories with others, I loved spending time with My dad and Grandpa and brother.
• For the past 5 years I enjoyed working with him in the excavation company, Paul and I were always on the phone talking about the next job or the next equipment that we needed to buy to do the job, me and him grew really close and I am so glad that I was able to work with my dad through the last few years of his life, I learned so much from him, he was always happy and had a smile on his face no matter what was happening around him, He always had a great attitude about life nothing could ever get him down, no matter what the problem or outcome was he just kept on smiling that is what I am going to remember most about my dad.

o Jill is the roudy one with a heart of solid gold, and my dad’s first little girl
• I will always be my daddy’s little girl
• I admire him so much for everything he has been through and accomplished.
• My dad’s stubbornness is what has gotten him as far as he got in life.
• There in nothing he couldn’t do as long as he wanted it done.
• He has always been there to support me whether he approved of not, but he would always let us know his thoughts.
• My dad fought till his last breath just like he has for the past four years.
• I am so glad that he was so stubborn so that we could have him for as long as we did.
• It just is never enough when you love someone so much.
• My dad is my hero and always will be.

o Brad was my dad’s little boy and easiest child to raise He always seemed to go with the flow and seldom complained.
• When ever I think about my dad, I think about camping out under the stars. He loved to be out camping, going four-wheeling, or just being outdoors.
• We had so much fun as a family on all of the Lake Powell trips. With our Liston luck every time that we went we'd get rained out or blown away by the storms that ruined so many of our tents, but it wasn't quite a Powell trip with out it.
• I love thinking about how he always tried so hard to make the week that we spent at Powell the best possible. I think about his swim suit that was probably a few sizes to small, and that ugly old orange marshmallow life jacket of his; every time that he'd jump off the boat into the water we weren't sure if he was coming back up or not. Those are my favorite memories of and with my dad.
• I also remember when dad found patty; he was so excited. I remember him telling us about her, and his face was lit up with a smile. I can only hope to be half of the man that he was to her. Patty says that he Never, not once, raise his voice to her, and I'll take Patty’s word for it.
• My dad was honest in all of his work that and always set an amazing example to everyone around him. In his last few months he was so dedicated to figuring out what was going on inside of him that he kept him self busy even though he had retired and felt sick. He spent weeks searching for every bit of voodoo that claimed to cure cancer.; not only did he look, but he also tried every one of them he could get his hands on.
• Again, I hope that I can be like him, to be that dedicated in everything that I put my mind to, just all around he was one of the best men that I think a lot of us knew. He will be missed

o Kerri is Paul’s little baby and is the cutest and most studious child with a lot of potential.
• One thing that I will always remember about dad is he always worked hard for what he wanted. He taught all of us to be hard workers, no matter what it is that we are doing
• My dad had a sheep-skin rug in his room at the foot of his bed that I loved to sleep on till I was about 10. I have heard stories though that he used to do the same with his mom and dad, I guess that must be a youngest child thing to do.
• I always remember the fishing trips of the trips to lake Powell. We haven’t gone quite so often in the last year, but the times we did were still a lot of fun.
• I loved my dad, and still do. He was an amazing father.
• Paul’s children were his greatest joys. Most of us have worked side-by-side with our dad in many of the business adventures that he has been involved in.
• Paul has been referred to by many as The man with the golden finger. He was very successful in the businesses the he owned and managed. He operated A&P Craft and Paul Liston Custom Wood for 15 years. He had several employees that loved and adored him, mostly Women, but there were a lot of them.

• Paul met Patty Creer Kerecman on a blind date in February 2001. They both knew immediately that they wanted to share the rest of their lives together.
o Their marriage was solemnized in the Mount Timpanogos Temple on May 25th 2001.
o He then became a father to four more children and eventually 5 grand children.

• Together Patty and Paul started Western Oasis, which was also known as Paul Liston Excavation.
o The business grew quickly and was a great success as Paul continued to please customers
o When it comes to business Paul says
• “Make your own good luck, don’t wait for it to come to you.”
• “Work hard, work smart, and rely on the lord“

• My dad’s favorite overall hobby was travelling, be it for business for leisure. Some of the places that he has been to are:
o Tahiti
o Mexico
o Hawaii
o Alaska
o Canada
o The Caribbean
o And several countries in Europe

• One of his most memorable vacations was taking his father Verdin to Alaska along with my brother and I. We had a guide take us out on several fishing trips, and my brother Mark always seemed to catch the biggest fish; I don’t think that I ever caught the BIG one, but I sure had a great time with my dad, my grandpa, and my brother.

• Something funny about my dad is that he looked a lot like Paul Newman. A good story about this happened one evening when my dad was having dinner at the Chine Town restaurant in Provo.
o After he ordered, he couldn’t help but notice several of the employees talking and pointing in his direction.
o One of them finally approached after hearing someone call him Paul and said “We knew it, you are Paul Newman aren’t you.”
o My dad probably laughed as he was often mistaken as Paul Newman throughout his life, including his time spent in Pennsylvania as a missionary.
• He would tell stories about knocking on the doors and telling people that he was Paul. Many of them would assume that he was Paul Newman and let them in.
• Face it, if a guy came to your door that looked like Paul Newman and said that his name was Paul, wouldn’t you let him into you house, if nothing more than to give him a drink?
• My dad has been the greatest example when it comes to patience, honesty, patients, determination, patience, patience, patience, reliability, and respect.

• My dad was not just a dad; he was a friend, he was a good listener, and he was someone you could confide in, and trust.

• He had a firm testimony that there is life after death and that families can be together forever. He was a great example of someone having incredible faith in the gospel of Jesus Christ.

• I love my dad and will continue to do so throughout the rest of my life.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The passing of my father, Paul E. Liston

I apologize, but it has been a few days since my father finally passed away.

He passed away Monday night at 10:30 pm while I was in the room watching him and talking with my sisters Jill & Kristine. After all of the pain and trials that he has been through in the last five years it was sad to see him go but it was also a blessing to know that he was free of the physical pain and sickness that he had been suffering.

We have been working on the funeral plans and obituary for the last two days. The viewing will be Friday night at the Walker Family Mortuary in Spanish Fork, Utah. The funeral services will be Saturday morning at 11:00, followed by the interment at the Spanish Fork City Cemetery (I just typed library, but I don't think that they would appreciate that. Long day...).

My dad was as amazing in life as he has been after. He made arrangements for just about everything so we have only had to make some of the small and simple decisions. This is so much easier than having to start out from scratch. I firmly think that it should be a good idea for everyone to have some sort of plan even if there is no foreseeable date of departure. It helps the family so very much as they deal with the loss and try to make everything work well.

Thanks dad! =0)

Paul E. Liston
(September 19, 1956 - January 19, 2009)

Paul Earl Liston passed away peacefully January 19, 2009 at home, after a courageous battle with GIST cancer. He was born September 19, 1956, in Provo, Utah to Verdin and Marie Hall Liston. He married Alisa Ann Adams in the Provo Temple on July 20, 1978 and they are the parents of five children. They divorced and he later married Patty Creer Kerecman. Their marriage was solemnized in the Mt. Timpanogos Temple on May 25, 2001.

Paul owned and managed Paul Liston Woods & A&P Craft Supply for 15 years. He owned and operated Paul Liston Excavation & Western Oasis for the last eight years. He was always one that would work well with customers and will be greatly missed by many. Paul enjoyed the friendships of everyone that he associated with during his business career.

Paul lived for his wife Patty, kids, and grandkids; they were his whole world. Paul enjoyed life itself, and all blessings the Lord bestowed upon him. He was an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, and served an honorable mission in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

The family would like to thank the following people for their excellent care in his time of need: Annette Nielsen, Dr. Brian Tudor, Dr. Lei Chen, CNS Hospice staff, Sandra and the “Baker girls”.

Paul is survived by his mother, Marie Liston; wife, Patty; nine children, Bryan, Mark (Tara), Jill (Nate Olsen), Brad, and Kerri Liston; Kelli, Kristine (Adam Asay), Kyle, and Clay Kerecman; grandchildren, Kaiden, Ryder, Miles, Tinny, & Brynlee; siblings, Sandra (Ken Baker), Sherril (Sherry), Elaine (Joe Ford), Larry (Madelyn), Joyce, and Janice (Delwin Hemmingway). He is also survived by his in-laws, Howard N. and Joyce H. Creer. Paul was preceded in death by his father, Verdin Liston.

Funeral services will be held Saturday, January 24, 2009 at 11:00 a.m. in the LDS Chapel at 870 East Canyon Road, in Spanish Fork. There will be a viewing held at Walker Mortuary, 187 South Main, in Spanish Fork on Friday evening, January 23, 2009 from 6:00-8:00 p.m. and at the church on Saturday morning from 9:45-10:45 a.m. prior to the service. Interment will be in the Spanish Fork City Cemetery.

Condolences can be sent to the family on the Walker Family Mortuary web site.

Monday, January 19, 2009

The good and the bad

Boy, I had no clue what it would be to go through this. We have been very lucky in my family. Up to this point the only person that has passed away was my grandpa, but it was expected. Caring for and watching for my dad has been a hard thing to go through. He has good days, and then some not so good days.

Sunday luckily was a pretty good day. We had many friendly and loving visitors to come and show support to him as well as the family. One thing that has come out of this is that my siblings and I are a lot closer now than I think we have ever been.

I have also watched Patty's family and felt their love and I appreciate them ever so much. More so than I could even express. Patty's daughter has been here with Patty and Paul ever since Paul was brought home. She has been as strong as a wolf, with support for everyone here. She also brought Diet Coke with her, Thanks! =0)

Well My dad is still fighting and we don't know how much longer he will be with us. At this point though I think that we all feel that he has suffered more than he should be allowed, and that he needs to pass on to somewhere better. I am sure that there is a large crowd up there somewhere waiting to greet him as he enters the next process.

Someone passed along this book, The Message in hopes that it would help to ease the pain. It has a great message of the afterlife and what happens as loved ones pass through to the next life. It has helped me to remember that there is a large master plan that includes all of us. It is a quick read but I would recommend it to anyone in this same situation.

Thanks everyone for your love and support!

Thursday, January 15, 2009


So unfortunately I learned what hospice was today.

My dad has been suffering from a rare form of cancer known as GIST (Gastrointestinal Stromal Tumor). He was diagnosed with this cancer several years ago and has been involved in several state-of-the-art medications and treatments to help fight the disease.

About a year ago the treatment that he was on stopped working. There is a lot of research going on out there right now, and there were a couple things that my dad tried in the house and in the doctor's office to try and beat this beast.

Well, over the past year the tumors have grown and grown until recently. There is a brand new treatment that they just started my dad on. It sounded really good, and actually started working. He took a CAT scan in december that revealed that three of the four tumors had stopped growing, and had even started to shrink in size. Wonderful news!

The fourth tumor however hadn't stopped growing but it looked like it was starting to slow down (this is the largest one by the way). I don't know a lot about the tumors, but slowing down sounded good to me.

Well, last weekend my dad called me and said that he had things to do if I wanted to come over, so I went over to help in at his house. When I got there though I met a man that was not acting like my dad. He was up and moving around the house, but he was very slow and seemed like he was sleep walking. As the day went on he did some crazy things that didn't make sense at all. These actions really worried Patty and I.

We decided that we shouldn't leave him along as long as he was acting like this. We thought that maybe he was acting like this because the medications were not mixing well. We took him off of the pain medication and off of the anxiety medication to see if that helped. Sunday morning he was a little better, but was still really slow. Then he started to complain about severe pain in his chest and lower body, so we gave him a pain patch.

For the rest of the day he continued to respond slowly if at all, but it was better than the day before, so Patty and I just figured that we should go easy on the medications. Well Monday morning I guess that things were worse.

Monday morning he got up and made it into the bathroom before he collapsed, unconscious. Patty called 911 and they transfered him to the ER in Provo. For the past 4 days the doctors have been running every scan, x-ray, or test that they could think of to try and figure out what was causing the problems.

Well this morning they came into the room after taking another scan of the tumors. The scan showed that the large tumor had started to fight back and started to grow. It seems that just in the last two weeks that the tumor has continued to grow at a pretty fast rate, causing everything in the chest cavity to be compressed. This tumor is located in his liver, and is now more than three times the size of a normal liver.

The only thing that they can think of is that the size and immediate growth of the tumor has taken over so much of the liver that it is unable to do anything with the blood that it is supplied with. Just in the last week his health has gone downhill so fast that we find it hard to believe that it was the tumor.

Everything in his chest cavity though is so compressed that his heart is having problems pumping blood, his lungs are having trouble breathing, and everything just seems to be slowly stopping. The Doctors said that they recommended ceasing treatment of the cancer so that my dad could return to his house and his family in peace and comfort. This is where the hospice comes into play.

Hospice isn't an option unless the patient has a terminal illness and usually less than 6 months to live. With the growth of the tumor in my dad's liver, and the rate of shutdown of all of his systems, the doctors said that he may have a week left to live...


So after that news we returned home, setup one of those temporary medical beds in my dad's office, and have started to prepare for the worst. Watching my dad go this way has been hard, but I never imagined that it would be like this. It is something that we knew would come one day, but didn't think that it would hit this week. Luckily he has been able to prepare a little as far as how he wants things to occur and all that, but it is still so much harder than I have ever even imagined.

I feel so hurt for everyone involved.

His Mother who, at 95, is as healthy or healthier than any of her children. She says that a parent should not live to see a son die.

His Wife. He has recently found love in his second marriage. Both Patty and Paul have worked so hard to make things happen. They paid off the house, they planned vacations together, they planned retirement. And now they have planned a funeral.

My little 16 year old sister who still needs a dad to watch out for her and make sure that the guy that takes her to the dance has someone to fear.

My little brother who is getting married in June, and when planning the date was hoping that it would be soon enough for my dad to attend.

The list goes on and on so don't be offended if I didn't list you...

Everyone that I can think of will miss this wonderful and respected man. He has done so much that I can't even begin to list everything that he has done for me. I am ever so grateful for all the time that he has spent with me, and now I don't know what I am going to do that he will not be here for much longer. Cherish the memories and lessons I guess.


Well tomorrow is another day for us here at the Liston house. Lots of visitors and lots of family. Thanks to everyone that has shared your love and concern.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Happy Bird Day to Daisy!

While it may not be Daisy's Exact birth day, I celebrate her birthday on National Bird Day, which is Jan. 5th.

She will be 11 tomorrow, almost a teenager!

I don't know what I am going to get her yet. I was going to take her to work and celebrate it with my office, but it is going to be damn cold tomorrow, and I don't want her to get sick. So instead I am going to leave her in her pen in the nice warm house.

I will probably give her an extra peanut or two, and maybe something else. She is a fan of food, so she is easy to shop for.

I may even sing 'Happy Bird Day" (it sounds just like the familiar "Happy Birthday" song, but it is a little different).

Happy Bird Day to any bird owners out there =0)

Friday, January 2, 2009

Utah Utes - 13 and 0 - The Perfect Seasom

I usually cheer for BLUE (PGHS Vikings), but when the University of Utah Utes play, I cheer for RED (mostly because they are not Blue... (byu blue that is))

Utah played Alabama State tonight in the Allstate SugarBowl and they kicked some Butt!

I wish that I could have gone to New Orleans to see the game, but it wasn't meant to be this time. I was there though in my living room though, cheering all the way.