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Dennis Siltala was an engineer – the railroad kind – every kid’s hero. Whenever Dennis sounded his train’s whistle he awakened the child inside of every adult within earshot.

I’m grateful for knowing Dennis as his pastor.


He was “Mr Faithful.” Every Sunday he stationed his wheelchair on the left side of the entrance to the auditorium for the 3rd service of the day.

The wheelchair and Dennis’ physical aliments were the residuals of an accident from the late 90’s – a broken neck and a multitude of side-effects.

His railroad career began as a Brakeman, and then conductor, and finally as an Engineer. He was working as a Workforce Coordinator when he passed away.

Dennis’ body was broken but not his spirit. He was grateful to be alive and believed it would only be a matter of time before he could walk again. Jesus was the source of his hope. Real hope, not wishful thinking.

On October 1, 2015 his long wait for healing ended. He suffered a heart attack. No pain. Life on earth ended instantly. He was 57.

And then he got his first breath of heavenly air.

Dennis believed that death was not a period at the end of life’s sentencedeath was a comma that punctuated life to a higher level.

He was on his feet again, big time. He experienced all he had lived by faith. Somewhere in heaven there is an engineeer’s whistle blowing.

Remembered as Amazing

He was Poppa “D” to his grandkids.

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A friend wrote, “You realize how much you truly miss someone when something happens good or bad and the only person you want to tell is the person who isn’t there.”

Losing someone you love close to a holiday, means that holiday is forever shaped by their death.

Dennis had the kind of attitude that transforms the meaning of chores into gratitude..

Thanksgiving writing

Flood cyberspace with words of life. Share Dennis’ story. Join the conversation and post a comment below.

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Bob Jones

Happily married to Jocelyn for 44 years. We have two adult sons, Cory and his wife Lynsey and their son Vincent and daughter Jayda; Jean Marc and his wife Angie and their three daughters, Quinn, Lena and Annora. I love inspiring people through communicating, blogging, and coaching. I enjoy writing, running, and reading. I'm a fan of the Double E, Bruins, Celtics, Red Sox and Pats. Follow me on Twitter @bobjones49ers

One Comment

  • Julie MacKenzie says:

    I loved this morning’s blog Pastor Bob. Definitely a great message. Thank you for sharing it with us. Have a great week! ❤️

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