~A Letter To My Brother~
There are not enough words to describe you, Dale. You were my brother and my
friend. You were my rock when I was unsteady, and my clown when I was sad.
I still remember the last night I spent with you on December 21, 1997. You
were at the christmas play at my church. When you were leaving we talked
about how we all would be at grandmas for christmas. It was the last
christmas before you graduated, and the last christmas before I would be a
mommy. You were excited about being an uncle. You had even talked about it
that night as you played with a new born little girl at church. I have you
on video with that baby. Sometimes I get a little jealous that it was not my
I Love You, Uncle Dalsey
Uncle Dale, I was born on the fourth of June in 1998. My mommy was carrying
me when the accident happened. I never got the chance to meet you here on
earth, face to face. But I have seen you, and heard you, and felt you hug
me. I know who you are, and I love you very much.
I showed you to my momaw one day. You were in my room. I don't think she
saw you, but she said yes when I asked her if she saw you.
I know you watch out for me. Momaw and Popaw know that now too. I heard her
tell my mommy that they know it now, since I saw you. You wanted to be an
uncle, and you wanted me to be a girl. The doctors told my mommy I was a
boy, but that wasn't what you wanted. So turns out, I am a girl. Now, if
an angel didn't do that, I don't know who did.
I always call you uncle Dalsey. That name just suits you. I can't wait
until we can all be togther, like we would have been if that night had not
happened. Momaw and popaw said God knows what they needed to get them
through, and I was it. I'm glad I could help them. You know I'm named after
you don't you. Of course you do. You know all about us, don't you?
With All My Love, Grandson
Dale, you were such a special young man. So much love to share, so much
respect for those around you, so much gentleman for someone so young. You
can never be forgotten by anyone who knew you.
Liberty Pentecostal Church and The Dale Johnston Youth Center
Liberty was such a big part of Dale's life. The people in that church were
our family. They say church people can be so close to you, and we found this
to be true at Liberty. We had no blood family in Harlan. But after we met
everyone at Liberty, we found more than family. We were in the royal family.
No one could have been better to us than our family there.
This church was such an important part of our lives, and especially to Dale,
that after the accident, we had to do something for them. We prayed about it
a long time, and the Lord impressed upon us the need for a youth center
there. There was and still is, a great work to be done at Liberty. We took
the money that we got from insurance and donated it to the church for a youth
The people in the community were so excited about this. Right away, they
knew it was going to be named The Dale Johnston Memorial Youth Center.
Everyone in Harlan, and surrounding areas, started donating to this. Before
we knew it, things were really coming together. There was so much time and
money and supplies and love that were given to the building of this
center. Even persons that were not saved, persons that were not even
associated with Liberty, gave freely and generously.
The center was almost complete, and on
Dale's 20th. birthday, Oct. 22,1999, we had the dedication of "The Dale
Johnston Memorial Youth Center".
There was over three hundred people in attendance for
this. The television and papers covered it. So much excitement. So many
souls to be reached through this.
There is plenty of room in this inn. No one is turned away. Whatever you
need, the church and youth center are there, with dedicated people to help
you find your way to the Lord. This center was much needed, and there are so
many people responsible for it being there.
Dale would be so proud to know that we have tried to continue his witness and
testimony. We feel that Dale will always live, through this center. We will
keep working and improving this youth center so that it will always be
equipped to help anyone who needs somewhere to hold meetings, and to always
have a place for teens to be able to go. Dale would want somewhere that they
could all be comfortable.