The Time My Dad Visited Thailand


Some of the best times I can remember with my dad were spent traveling. When I was just 9 years old, he surprised me by taking me with him on a business trip to Marburg, Germany. I was so shocked and excited by the news, I immediately burst into tears! When I was 17, he invited me to tag along on another one of his business trips to Europe – but this time we wandered the streets of London and Rome together. I’ll never be able to put into words how much these memories with my dad mean to me, but I know I’ll be forever grateful that he chose me as his travel buddy.

As if these memories weren’t spectacular enough, my dad found a way to connect his recent business trip to China with a “side trip” to Chiang Mai, Thailand so that he could visit me and Dylan. This time, I didn’t cry, but I was more excited about seeing him than I ever had been before!

It was nothing short of a blessing to have him with us in a place I love so much. We had a great time just cruising the countryside on motorbikes, eating Thai food, and having him meet the students at our school. Of course, the kids absolutely adored him and hated to see him leave – as did I.

Thank you, Dad, for filling my life with so many joyful memories. I only understood it a little bit at the time, but now I know that your heart has always mirrored the same kind of unconditional love that Christ has for his children – He didn’t have to choose us, suffer for us, or sacrifice for us, but He did. I’m so glad you chose me. I’m so glad that you introduced me to outside cultures, and I’m glad that it’s become a “special thing” that we can always share together. I can’t wait to travel with you again!

7 comments for “The Time My Dad Visited Thailand

  1. Posted by: Jonathan Bollback

    Lauren you do not know me, I am a friend of your dads from Silver Springs in the 1980’s. At the news of your dad’s passing to heaven this is a poignant tribute to him. I remember the night some of his friends barely escaped jail time after christening him for his wedding. If memory serves he had to clean up at our place to further avoid the wrath of family for such a travesty. You have a treasure of memories mentioned in your tribute to hang onto until you see him again in glory. Those are priceless. I am sorry for your loss and will pray for hope and peace from the Giver of Life for you, Jessica, and Brian, and Ron and Kathy.

  2. Posted by: Jeanie Fundeburk

    Dear Lauren, Dylan, I`m so very sorry to hear of your great loss of your precious Dad. He looked and sounds like a good man and a wonderful Father. How blessed to have such a man to love you and share your life. I just lost my precious Daddy this last April 22,14. I was able to be with him but it was still a great loss. God bless you with His amazing comfort and peace that only He can give. I`m praying for you. Love, Jeanie Funderburk

  3. Posted by: Stephen Hopkins

    Thanks so much for the article on your dad. It is very heartwarming to see after the bad news we received last night. It really shows what a wonderful life he had and how he will be missed. God bless you and your family.
    your Great-uncle Steve and great-aunt Cindy

  4. Posted by: Eva Wakefield

    Lauren, I have never had the pleasure to meet you or your siblings; but I was friends with your mom and dad when they still lived in Maryland. I was at their wedding 30 years ago. I am so saddened by the sudden and untimely loss of your dad. Mark always impressed his friends because whatever he did, he did all the way. 100% or nothing at all. I remember how hard he worked to master guitar and bass and next thing we knew, he was in a band. He was a mechanical whiz and a helluva an athlete. He was a very cool guy. Your mom is an incredible lady and I am so sorry that she has to go the rest of the way without him by her side. I am glad you all have such a great family to support each other! Love, sorrow and respect from an old friend. Eva

  5. Posted by: Nicole

    This is so precious! Your dad sure left you all an amazing legacy.

  6. Posted by: Doyle Jenkins

    Dear Lauren and Dylan. I am so sad and sorry to hear of your father’s passing. I am praying for the Holy Spirit to comfort you at this time of sudden loss. I never met your father, but it is evident from the pictures you posted that he loved you and had a heart for people,especially children. Cherish the memories you shared and take comfort knowing that your dad is safe at home with Jesus.

  7. Posted by: Janis Davies

    Dear Lauren, you are so blessed to have a dad that planted a seed in your heart for the nations. These pictures speak volumes about him and your relationship. A lover of adventure that is plain to see.

    God’s peace and grace,

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