The island was sold in 2006 after being on the market for 3 years. Dave's health had deteriorated to the point that he could no longer maintain the place and his siblings lived too far away to take on the job.
The island looks
little changed in 2013 beyond the new roofs. Rumor has it that the new
owners replaced the gas refrigerator. It was getting very hard to keep
running so that was definitely a good idea.
Dave would have been pleased to see it was so well used. There was a huge group on the island. A tent had been erected on the top of the island to handle the overflow crowd.
David Whitaker wanted his ashes left on Quartz Rock (McGregor Point) near the top in a spot that could see his former island. His wife Brenda wanted to do it ever since Dave died in 2008 but her health prevented it. In 2013 she decided that waiting another year for her health to improve no longer made sense, so Ava and I undertook the task.
The trip started at the dock at Birch Island where we rented a boat. Ava is waiting for me.
Heading out brought back lots of old memories of heading out to the island. Ava is in front.
We docked about a 1/4 mile to the left of this cabin on Quartz Rock.
As you can see, one can no longer see the island from the top of Quartz Rock, so I searched for the closest spot that offered a view of the island. For a full size image (3.2 MB) of the above, click HERE. As a side note, the hike to the top is a lot harder at age 73 than at age 23.
This was the highest point from which I could see the island and it is clear that the trees would soon be big enough to obscure it even from here but this is where I buried his ashes. The spot is 500 to 1000 feet down towards Dave’s Island.
"Dave's" island is the round one on the right of the two with trees on them.
I said a prayer for Dave before placing the rock over his ashes. He was not a conventionally religious person and so my words respect that.
Mother Earth, I return to you the ashes of one of your most devoted servants, David Lewis Whitaker. He was also a devoted husband, father and teacher. Throughout these other aspects of his life, he also strove to serve You.
Please keep these ashes in your heart for all eternity.
The island was owned jointly by Dave and his siblings. Dave's brother Jim
died in Hawaii in 2011. Dave's sister, Barbie Richardson is alive and well
living in California. Dave's wife has moved from Michigan to Pennsylvania
to live with their son, Travis.
The island was owned jointly by Dave and his siblings. Dave's brother Jim died in Hawaii in 2011. Dave's sister, Barbie Richardson is alive and well living in California. Dave's wife has moved from Michigan to Pennsylvania to live with their son, Travis.
This is a sad posting for me, but I return to the picture at top and take joy in the fact that the island is now in the care of a new family that clearly loves it and is keeping it in a primitive state. It is worth noting that what we now view as a primitive state would have been considered quite normal in 1900 and luxury in 1850. After all the island sort of has running water, it has a gas refrigerator and gas lights. The lack of insulation was the norm in 1850 and still not that common in 1900.