Letter to my grandfather

Dear Grandpa

Dear Grandpa,

It was so nice to visit with you an Maurine last week. What a blessing that adventure was!
By the time I got home I had traveled 2300 miles! We live north of Spokane in a quiet little community called “Deer Park”.
Everyone has horses, and livestock. Our next door neighbor has 50 head of Bison.
I feel like you would love it up here, and I wish so bad that you were able to visit me.

I wanted you to know, that I came down to Utah to visit you, because it was a very special day for a very special person.
I also organized two freedom rallies while I was in Utah as well, but the primary mission was to see my grandpa who has taught me so much.

Grandpa from an early age, I have learned a lot from you. Mostly good things! Religion is a sore spot for me, because from my point of view, religion causes people so much pain. Most of the wars in the world have been as a result of one religion not agreeing with another.
In 1857, this was also true for the LDS church, and leaders of the LDS church in southern Utah took part in a horrible massacre in Mountain Meadows.
Even Brigham Young’s own adopted son took part in this massacre of over 100 innocent men, women and children.

Grandpa, you must understand that I love you. Even though I respect your faith. I truly do not want anything to do with religion in general though.
From the Catholics with the Inquisitions, to the Mormons in the Mountain Meadows Massacre. Religion is just a very scary to me. One on one faith is much more pure to me. Thats why I call my faith a “relationship” and not a “religion”, because I have a relationship with the Lord.

I have faith in Jesus. I studied my Bible all of the time. I memorize scriptures. I love the Lord with all of my heart. I hope that is some comfort to you. These scriptures are truth to me, and they tell me no total apostasy ever took place, nor will it ever take place.

“The Lord will not cast off his people, neither will he forsake his inheritance” (Psalm 94:14). “They that trust in the Lord shall be as Mt. Zion, which cannot be removed, but abideth forever. As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about his people from henceforth even forever” (Psalm 125:1-2). Read Psalm 89:19-37. “I will make an everlasting covenant with them that I will not turn away from them to do them good. I will put my fear in their hearts. They shall not depart from me” (Jeremiah 32:40). Our Savior promises, “My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me; And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand. My Father, which gave them me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of my Father’s hand. I and my Father are one” (John 10:27-30).

I believe that those who trust in the Lord will be reunited some day. I firmly believe that this applies to everyone, not just Mormons, not just Catholics, not just any other group. It is written, and it shall be so.

But the one thing that I wanted to tell you grandpa. Is that I love you, and the lessons in life that you taught me. Between you and my father, I was taught work ethics from a very young age. Those ethics have carried me through some very tough times in life. For that I am grateful.
I don’t have my hand out to you asking you for anything. Because you have already given me an inner willpower to strive to be better all of the time. I work continuously to improve the lives of my family and of those around me.

This year I have organized 9 Freedom Rallies, and I have drove thousands of miles to participate in those rallies. Without pay. Without any immediate reward. Because I love freedom, and I love our country. Which is something else that I learned from you grandpa.

My inheritance from you was given to me when I was 3 years old, when I asked you “Grandpa am I a good worker”, and you replied “Yes Ryan, you are”.

I knew from that age that I had a purpose and a strength that you gave me, and that no one could take away.
Likewise, my children are very hard workers, and they know the value of a job well done.

I hope you know how much you have given me, and how much I appreciate it. I will never forsake you or the things that you have taught me.

With love and respect.

Ryan Richard Thompson



I wrote this to my grandfather a few years before he passed away.  I learned more from him, in my short time knowing him, with the short visits that I had with him, than any man that I have met in my life.  ~Ryan Thompson