Listening to stories shared by family and friends of 12-year-old Isaac Smith, a portrait is painted with shades of blue (his favorite color) of a boy with unlimited interests, unique talents and wisdom beyond his years.
Isaac is creative. He made a stained glass box with a mirror as the bottom last school year at Olympic Peninsula Home Connections and showed genuine interest and focus on the project, his teacher Luci Chambers said.
"He really wanted to do well," she said.
Isaac is fun. He talked 37-year-old pastor's wife and mother of three Marciana Heemstra into riding the zip line in his backyard in the pitch black of night last Christmas, Heemstra said.
"I'll never forget the rush of icy wind and Isaac's laughing voice asking if I made it to the end OK," she said.
Isaac is caring. Some people ask questions to learn something for themselves, but Isaac's questions were more thought-provoking in nature, designed to help him learn about the other person and to cause them to think, his father Josh Smith said.
"He talked to me almost every day about somebody he was asking questions so they could hear his heart," Smith said.
Isaac is playful. Smith said his son often forgot his own strength when playing with his 10-year-old sister Adalie and always felt bad if he hurt her but never would hesitate to start playing again.
"That's just how he loved her," he said.
Isaac is talented. During an end-of-the-year talent shows at OPHC, Isaac brought out his stilts and walked around with them, showing people how they work, OPHC program coordinator Phil Brand said.
"I'll never forget him, that's the bottom line," Brand said. "He was just that type of kid."
Isaac is inventive. The heat of the sun, wood, metal, water and everything else were inspiration for inventions, Smith said.
"He didn't let his mind be limited by science as we know it," Smith said. "So he would take the pieces of what we knew about it and invent things to go along with it."
Isaac is athletic. For three years Melody Miano taught Isaac physical education at OPHC. At the last day of school, Isaac told her he couldn't wait to take P.E. with her again next year, Miano said.
"It's a great loss," she said. "You can't wrap your mind around it, it's incredible."
Isaac is perceptive. Not one to hold grudges, Isaac always saw past what people were doing and saw who they were and why they were doing it, Smith said.
"He understood their actions were based on where they were in life," he said.
Isaac is musical. Three weeks ago, Smith heard his son playing a twangy blues-type tune on the piano. Though Isaac had struggled to learn to play, he loved the piano and was very determined, Smith said. Smith joined in on the guitar and Adalie joined in on the violin, he said.
"Adalie and I play together and it's beautiful, but there's a part missing," Smith said. "Yet somehow it's carried on."
Isaac died June 19 in an accident while on vacation in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Smith purposefully referred to Isaac in the present tense during an interview with the Sequim Gazette, because his son continues to exist, he said.
"Teresa and I are not sad for him. We're just not, because he lives where he is yearned for," Smith said, referring to heaven. "We are sad for us. He would tell us, 'This is selfish, Dad.'"
Smith said his wife, Teresa, has found comfort in the fact that as a home-schooling mom she got to spend more time with her son than most mothers.
"We were not ready to have nor give back the son we had, yet we know we were blessed for 12 full years," he said.
Family and friends have overwhelmed him with support and his family has felt lifted up by prayer, he said.
"God has carried me through these last hours and he will carry me through tomorrow," he said.
Isaac became a Christian at age 2 and at 3 he was showing a concept of eternity beyond his years, Smith said.
Isaac told his father that if a child in their neighborhood got hit by a car and died and people were outside crying over the child, he would ask why they were crying and tell them the child is in heaven, Smith said.
"When he spoke of God and eternity, it was not something to be attained but a burden for others and how do you help others to know this?" Smith said.
Isaac would wait patiently for his dad to come home from work each day and they spent time together working on projects and talking, he said.
"So many times as a graduate of Christian education programs I felt like I should be teaching him when he was teaching me," Smith said. "His faith was so simple, but his heart was of a man."
Isaac is in heaven, Smith said.
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