This world is not my home; I’m just a passing through,
My treasures are laid up somewhere beyond the blue,
The angels beckon me from heaven’s open door,
And I can’t feel at home in this world anymore.  –Jim Reeves

Four days ago, with all of us by his side, Elder Richard LaFleur passed on from this life and into his new life with the Lord.  For us, it doesn’t feel real and we wish we could open our eyes and everything go back to normal.  So many of us could draw you maps of the hospitals from memory and introduce you to most of the nurses and staff.  We remember that day.  We remember it all.

The last few days have been traumatic.  It hurts beyond words.  We are still processing what has happened and what is happening.  For over 30 years, Elder had what he called “rough patches”, but he always managed to come out on top, and we would all once again breathe easy and give God thanks.

Please bear with us as we say our hardest goodbye to the man who gave us unconditional love that we could walk in confidence, fight the good fight, and finish our course as he did.  We are so grateful that our family was together–surrounding him throughout all of this–a hand never leaving his side.  For us, lines are blurred between what others see as family and what was family to him.  He loved so many people.

We were all his family.

Death comes in many forms.  It’s anything lost.  It’s an absence that creates a deep homesickness for what’s gone.  We will miss him, our conversations with him, his prayers, his hugs, and his teachings.  He was smart, hilarious, and razor sharp.  We will find strength to be happy again because he left us in a good place.  We have a ministry that will take us the rest of the way home.  We have each other.

Elder, our lives are forever changed.  Our hearts, torn.

We will keep walking on this path together until we all get home, where Elder LaFleur is waiting for us.

God, please please help us today.


  1. Yes it is giant hole,in each our lives, but so are the volumes of memories, smiles ,words to the wise phrases, the joy he spread on all of us like the Carolina rain showers. He has prepared us and as much as possible spare us the pain of him leaving. He will continue to make us laugh ,cry, pray, and strive to live for the Lord with the Joy of the Lord. He is already greatly missed.praying for strength for us all.

  2. Sharing that Memorial service Sunday night with you, Sis.Jean and the Family, and seeing the video with these wonderful memories, expresses our love that we have for you, Rick, Lisa, Brad, Chris, Casey, and the grandkids! All the love, and smiles, and hugs only expresses a little of what we feel for the Elder, You, and them!!! We will take All that the Elder Planted In Us, and continue to Build in this, the Only Foundation, and Way Elder Put Us On, Through Christ, to finish Our Race With Joy!!! We Love All of You Very Much!

  3. There are many thoughts and great momentous occasions that can be written,but most of all I am thankful and love you for who you were! The impact you made on my life is forever in my heart! Thanks for allowing God to make you who we needed! The Spirit and Love you taught us will carry us on to where we want to go!! Have fun and we hope to see you soon!!
    Love Everett Smith

  4. The love and dedication you had for the Lord has thought your life. The love you have for your saints have shone brightly how much you want us to have the keys to make it to heaven, you have given everything you had for all of us. I live and appreciate you and you family and one day we will also be triumphant. I will miss you dearly
    Nadine smith

  5. This was BEAUTIFULLY written. Elder LaFleur was truly Blessed and Highly Favored by God. Thank you Sis. Jean and the family for sharing your treasure with us, that we too may learn how to live for Christ and grow rooted in the word of God. FOREVER THANKFUL for his labor of Love for the Lord and the family of God. To my family of God….”let us continue to fight the GOOD FIGHT; that we too can have eternal life!

  6. Will be Miss, thank God were Bless with his spiritual truth he left us to keep alive in Christ,without The ElderAndLove of You Both,Sister Jean,always thank God for u all both,I know We Can Move Forward an, Up.

  7. We love you Elder for everything you taught us through the Lord. Let’s continue to hold on to the Lord and each so we can one day see Elder again. We love you so much and you will be greatly missed. Much love to Sis Jean and family. You all are in our prayers.

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