The Quilt

Lynn | | Sunday, June 7th, 2009

In late February, 2009 Michael and I were invited to attend a Gold Star Families event at the Marine Memorial Hotel, sponsored by the Blue Star Moms of East Bay. We had previously attended the same event in 2008. It is an event honoring our fallen soldiers and a chance to meet other families dealing with the same circumstances. The Blue Star Moms are so fabulous and gracious!

Sgt Rhys Klasno Memorial QuiltSo that each of us can share memories of our soldier we are given a table display. This year we decided to create a memory quilt that would show bits of Rhys’ life, time with Stephanie (the love of his life), and pictures of his daughter, London. This sounded like such great idea that I plunged forward with my design.

Now, I am not much of a designer. I’m great with fabric and colors, and I can quilt but translating this idea in my head to a finished project is quite another thing. I collected fabrics, a few of Rhys’ t-shirts, and lots of photos that I wanted to share. We found special fabric for printing the pictures and with the help of a few books, figured out how to stabilize the t-shirts for the quilt. Although it sounds hard, this was the easy part. The next part involved a bit of geometry, not my expert subject matter in any sense of the word (I don’t do math). This was a job for Michael.

Michael sees things in his head (LOL). This is a good thing when undertaking this kind of project. We commandeered the entire living room floor, on which Michael patiently set and reset our pictures, t-shirts and stripping fabrics. The goal was to form all of these into something resembling a rectangle, although we were never sure what size we would end up with. He re-arranged while I ran upstairs to sew a piece here and there. I “un-sewed” a few pieces as well! About three weeks later, we had recaptured the living room floor and the quilt was finished.

The next problem? How to display this thing. Michael quickly designed a PVC pipe contraption that would fit perfectly on the half table space we were allotted. We were able to drape the quilt and add a digital picture frame into the display as well. Needless to say, the quilt was the hit of the event with hundreds of photos taken, most by people who never knew Rhys but sensed much about him from the quilt. Michael and I like to think Rhys’ memory extends outward like rings formed in a pond when a leaf gently lands on the water. The quilt is a journey, as was Rhys’ life and we are so glad we can share it with everyone.

1 Comment »

  1. You all are incredible. I do not think I could handle all that you have gone through. But the one thing I know for sure is our Lord’s stength and energy that he provides is we ask and believe.
    He never leaves us alone. The quilt is beautiful and truly reflects your son’s beautiful life.
    My cousin Bridget Madison, is also a Gold Star Mother and has shared her days with me.
    I pray every day for the soldiers but also the families. God bless you and your family and Rhys’ family. By the quilt London will always know her Daddy and will know he loved her before she was born.


    Comment by Marilyn Olson — June 29, 2009 @ 7:25 pm

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