Dustin Shines In Our Hearts

Poems and Letters

Light a Candle
About Me by Dustin
Love From Mother!
Letters From Mom
Memory Poems
Angel Poems
Poems and Letters
Poems Tiffany has Shared
Poems and Letters
Poems and Letters
Poems and Letters



It is a daily walk that breaks my heart still to this day.  I hope that I can encourage you by saying time is key.  The first two years are a blur.  I went from fighting to keep his name on the tip of my tongue to pushing his memory deep in the back of my mind to help with the sleepless nights.  I would love to help in any way that I can, even if it is just someone who will listen when no one else understands.  I would love to hear more about your son and the circumstances you went through.  Talking about it is very good in spite of what others might think.  I'm here for you Patti.  One day at a time.
With love,
Martha Walker
I attached a photo of our son taken the night before he died.  Jonathan died following his 3rd open heart surgery to correct a very serious heart defect.  He was a fighter!!!

Grieving Mother


She clings to the hand of God

To keep from going wild

And in His presence

Comes to know

His other hand...

Holds her child


©Thais F. Henry


Date: 10/20/2007 12:46:56 PM
Subject: Re: Sister in the Lord/ Michigan
All the emotions you are having are ok. Of course you miss your son and what loving mom would not want to join her child. But, from the day Dustin was born God had a plan for him, a plan that does not make sense to us.
My mom died suddenly at 72, some would say but she lived 72 yrs here on earth.
But, she was doing so many things for the Lord, she went to the womens prison every Tues night to facilitate a bible study, participated in  retreats for wayward teens, she and my dad were the " older couple" of their church and brought so much to that church family, the Pastor became depressed when my mom died.
Her funeral was unbelievable, you would have thought they were honoring Mother Thereasa, some of the x prisoners talked to the crowd and shared how much hope she gave them. She was not always that faithful servant may be for about 15 yrs.   But, why would God take her when she was helping so many? One day we will know.
I hardly compare the loss of my 72 yr. old mom to your young son, I think you know that.
My middle child, my only son Matt/33yrs. old just got married 18 months ago, but I tell you what I would awaken at night and pray for his safety, he lived hundreds of miles away, worked in bars and restaurants until the wee hours of the morning, I was terrified one night the phone would ring. I can not even pretend to know what you are going through but slowly your emotions will stabilize, I promise, most of all God promises.
Dustin would want you to hang in there, I bet you my mom was one of his greeters at the Pearly Gates, she was something else, NO, she is something else. I know my mom is dancing at Gods feet and singing w/ the angles.............they are Happy up there. But for now its our job to stay down here and fulfill the plan God has for us. (    )  hug
Love, Marsha

Date: 10/19/2007 7:16:01 PM
Subject: Sister in the Lord/ Michigan
I just happened to look at your web site, my mouth is wide open, I am so sorry about your son. May you feel the hug and love I am sending you. I read many the letters, poems, viewed the pictures...all very touching.
God Bless you,
Marsha Childers
Plymouth Michigan

Date: 10/17/2007 12:40:15 PM
Subject: Re: Letters from Heven
What an awesome poem.  It is so hard to try to live without those we love here on earth, yet that is the very thing we do have hope in, that one day we will be reunited with them forever.  Always know that it is okay to cry.  God loves for us to come and let him catch our every tear.  Not one goes unnoticed and He is there to comfort us all along the way.  When there is great love, there is great grief.  I love you and I know that God will continue to walk with you every day. 

Date: 10/16/2007 9:54:57 AM
Subject: Re: Sunday
I can’t say how sorry I am for your loss.  I haven’t checked my email in a few weeks, logged on this morning and saw yours.  I am so so sorry.  Your son was obviously an amazing man.  I wish I could’ve known him, but I feel like I do from your loving words about him, your family and your amazing relationship.  You all are so uplifting to everyone you come across.
I found this poem when my father passed and I felt it spoke well towards our feelings at the time.  I hope it offers you some comfort too.
Know that my prayers are with you all.  Lola’s too.   
God Bless,
 Tamara and Lola
( I put the poem on  I love you Mom page so when you are all ready to read it ....very hard for me right now but the part I was able to read knew were words from Dustin.)

Date: 10/4/2007 11:14:20 AM
Subject: Fwd: Important Message
In a message dated 10/4/07 2:12:58 AM Central Daylight Time, BronstonBCarroll@aol.com writes:
This is an answer from Bronston Carroll that Dustin loved and respected so much

Mrs Wallace,

Words can not express my gratitude for you sending me this email.  I am amazed that in your time of grieving you would be gracious enough to send this email.  I found out a few days ago what had happen to Dustin and my heart has been heavily graved in his loss, even though I know he is in a better place (The Heavenly Father's warm embrace).  Dustin had a special place in my heart, he was honestly one of my favorite people in the whole wide world.  I remember on numerous occasion Dustin and me discuss the deep things of God.  I loved/love Dustin's heart and his ability to be authentic at all time.  He was/is a lover of people.  Dustin was/is the kind of person that impacted the lives he came in contact with.  I believe that many will come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ not because of Dustin's death but because of his life.  Know that I am deeply praying for you and the family.  Over the last few days as I have been reflecting and morning over Dustin death, the Lord reminded me of the poem/song I read at my grandmother's funeral a few years back that I would like to share with you.  

There is a part of me
That's only visiting
Torn from eternity
A stranger here

The awkward mingling of
The loveless and beloved
So far from things above
While I am here

So when the last notes of my soul's summer symphony
Go stealing through this old world's cold garden gates
I will hold no fear as You close my book of hours
And the hands of heaven carry me
Carry me home to stay

O Death where is your sting
Your tears and your tremblings
His peace is lingering
Even now

O Grave the battle's fought (no graver battles fought)
Your vict'ry has been lost
To Christ who gave it all
To take me now

I love you, I love Dustin, and I am praying for you/family/friends,

Date: 10/5/2007 10:35:32 AM
Subject: Re: Wed Morning
I am soooo glad she could come and be with you. I know it must mean allot to you to have her there.
You know I lost mom in Mar and I still feel the loss adn the absence of her in my house, but also know she is with God and my dad where she has wanted to be for so long. That gives me allot of comfort in its strange way.
I too can not imagine what you are going thru either, I pray I never live to see one of my kids pass before I do. Doug is 30 now and I worry about him more than anyone the way he drinks and thank God every time he gets behind the wheel that he has not hurt or killed someone or even himself.
We don't realize how precious life is until we loose someone that close. I know you will get thru this and only in time will the pain start to getting duller but will never go away. We only find a way to deal with it better over time.
Know that I love you and am with you in spirit since I could not be there in body.

Date: 10/10/2007 5:35:56 PM
Subject: I am So Sorry for your loss
Dear Ms. Rawls,
I would just like to convey my sympathy for your beloved son Dustin.
Although I have not purchased a puppy from you, I visit your website from time to time and was shocked and saddened by the news.
May God bless you and your family during this difficult time.
God Bless,
The Mignogna Family
From: R Fisher
Date: 10/10/2007 9:13:51 PM
Subject: Re: Looking for a Yorkie
Dear Patti -
You are so strong!!  Your faith and love in your son has saved you.  Please know we continue to pray for you and your family and admire your inner strength.  I am so glad that you and your puppies are part of our life.
God bless you always,
Roseann Fisher

Date: 10/9/2007 8:47:30 PM
Subject: Dustin

I worked with Dustin on the Vantage just a few weeks ago.  I only worked with him for 2 weeks, but everytime I saw him in the hallway he always had a big smile and a friendly hello.  he always seemed to be a genuine friendly guy. We would often see each other in the gym after shift and he would always get me pumped up with his loud music and his enthusiasm on the machines.  that guy could run for hours!  I lost a brother 2 years ago and my parents lost a son, so I understand how hard it is.  I am so sorry for your loss and wish you all the strength and courage that I know it will take to get through it.  My parents often say that time doesn't lessen the pain but you learn to deal with it better everyday.  And he is there with you helping you through it.  Again....I am so sorry to hear about Dustin and the pain that your family is going through.  All my love and prayers to you and your family.
Jennifer Surette


Date: 10/5/2007 9:22:22 PM
Subject: Re: Thank you

 I am glad for your sake the day is over, and hopefully the healing process can begin.  I was amazed at how strong you were on the outside, even though I know your heart is broken on the inside.  Continue to be strong and know that he is in a truly greater place than we are, and in the grand scheme of things the time is short till you will see him again.  The ceremony was beautiful and such a wonderful tribute to his life.  With all of the stories, pictures, family and friends I felt like I knew him, he really seemed like a great person and I wish I had a great friend like him.  He has apparently blessed so many lives and he blessed mine today, he reminded me not to take life for granted, and to really enjoy life more.  I hope I was able to bring you some comfort today and I will be here in the future.  I love you dearly and will always be here when you need a sholder to lean on.

Date: 10/4/2007 8:02:57 PM
Subject: Dustin My Hero

This is for Patty and David to know how much of a hero Dustin really is to me and Jr.  

Not knowing that Jr has a medical condition that is life threatening Dustin had no idea what was ahead of him.  A while back Dustin and Jr went out on the town together and must have had a really good time (smile).  Jr stayed the night at Dustin's afterwards.  In the morning Dustin went to wake Jr and could not.  Jr was stiff and unresponsive.  Dustin picked Jr up in his arms and carried him to the truck.  As Dustin was driving a stick shift truck he managed to get Jr's cell phone, look up my home number and call it.  When I answered the phone I hear someone yelling "Jr wake up please, Jr wake up".  I screamed into the phone "what is wrong?"  Dustin answers me with a voice like none I will ever forget.  The fear in his voice was horrifying.  He said, "Susan, it's Dustin. Does Jr have seizures?"  I said "no" and before I could say anything else Dustin said "he's stiff and not moving, I can't wake him up".  I said "Dustin call 911 right now, you have to get Jr to an emergency room right now".  Dustin said, "I am in the truck taking him to the hospital".  I told him "pull over and call 911 NOW".  Dustin said "I'm right here by the hospital".  I told him "okay, pull up to the emergency room doors and call me as soon as you get him there".  A few minutes later Dustin calls me and says "we are here at the ER, they are taking him out of the truck."  I said "Dustin listen to me, you need to tell them this."  He said "okay."  As I was telling him what was wrong with Jr he was repeating it back to the nurse and saying "oh my god."  I told Dustin I was on my way.  When I arrived at the hospital Dustin was sitting beside Jr's bed watching the doctor and nurses working on him fear in his eyes and tears rolling down his cheeks.  I asked Dustin what happened and he said "they went out that night and he couldn't wake him up and he didn't know what to do".  I asked him if he knew what Jr had and he said "no".  For some reason and to this day I don't know why I got angry.  I don't know if I thought it was Dustins fault but deep down I knew it wasn't.  I asked Dustin to step out of the room and he found a chair right outside Jr's ER door.  I went out, sat by Dustin and we talked.  I explained to him what Jr had and that it was not his fault.  I told him thank you for getting him to the emergency room so fast because every second counts when Jr gets like that.  I told him that this had happened once before but everything would be okay.  He never took his eye's off Jr and the tears never stopped.  I hugged Dustin and told him it was okay.  We then went back into the room and Jr's vital signs were coming back up.
This was a very serious situation and Dustin handled it without second thought.  I have to smile though when I think about him driving a stick shift truck, yelling at Jr, having the sense to look on Jr's cell phone for my number, and calling me.  Now, who do you know that can multi task like that, My hero Dustin.
Because of Dustin I still have my son.  Dustin is my Hero!

I am so sorry that you have to go through this pain.  Yet so young Dustin has done his work here on earth and God has bigger and better plans for him now.  He will always be there with you and watching over you.  I know he will be Jr's Guardian Angel as he will be yours.


Date: 10/2/2007 12:11:44 PM
Subject: To remember

Sometimes in these situations its hard to know the right thing to say. I went to John Wells funeral a few days ago. The preacher, he talked about what we the ones left behind go through after life here on earth. He said as we transend into the next stage of life we all go through, those  left behind are saying no don't go don't go, the other side is in joy saying in a loving and caring exitement, here he comes here he comes with open arms .... I believe he has  greater plans for, and need of Dustin at this time.
Your Friend,


From: barry graff

Date: 10/2/2007 9:32:06 AM

To: pdrawls1956@consolidated.net

Subject: dustin


I met dustin in the 3rd grade when I moved to katy and he made an impact on my life then little did I know how long that influence would continue. By the end of 3rd grade we were best friends my fondest memory of being a child is when he would come over on the weekends we would watch the movie alive while we were watching it we would turn my a/c down as far as it would go then we would grab a sheet he would get on one side and me on the other and hold the sheet over the vent while we were under it and we would see if we could survive the cold like in the movie..the last time I saw dustin was june 1 2006 we were planning on meeting up sometime while he was home this time. But the first thing we talked about was being a kid playing alive and of course he had that huge trademark smile of his on.


Mrs. Rawls I just want to truly tell you from the bottom of my heart thank you so much for the son that you gave this world. Even though his time was shortened on earth he lived his life the way that we can all only dream of. The influence that he had on everyone he came in contact will last forever in the hearts of us all. I have not lost a son but I did lose my sister when she was 22 and I was 14. I am truly sorry for your loss but just remember your son was amazing in every aspect of life and he will always be in your heart and everyones that was ever affiliated with him. Thank you once again and I am extreamly sorry for your loss



Barry Graff


From: Kesha Tincopa

Date: 10/1/2007 10:58:18 PM

To: pdrawls1956@consolidated.net

Subject: Dustin's website


Hi Patti,

I just want you to know that you have been on my heart most of the time the last few days.  I am so, so sorry for your loss.  The website you created for Dustin's memory is so precious and it was such a privilege to get to view it.  All I can do is imagine what you are feeling but I do know one thing, God loves you so very much.  I'm overwhelmed by the sense of His feelings toward you.  My prayer is that His peace envelops you even when it doesn't make sense.


We have been out of town, which is why I haven't called you.  I am going to call you tomorrow.  Even if it is just to leave a message, I just want you to know that our hearts and prayers are with you. 


We love you,

Kesha and family



Date: 10/4/2007 12:41:34 PM
Subject: RE: Funeral Services

I have a friend that has a son that went to school with Dustin. His name Is Jaugue Ardoin. He went to elementary and junior high. He said to give you his prayers and that Dustin was a great person and he will be missed.



From: madalynederek@aol.com

Date: 10/1/2007 2:45:03 PM

To: pdrawls1956@consolidated.net

Subject: Dustin


Hi Patty,

This is Danyell, I am Robin's daughter.  I just want to tell you I am so sorry to hear about Dustin, myself and all his friends are just completely heart broken.  Dustin was amazing  and was the funniest person I knew.  I put up your link on myspace through a bulletin for all his friends to see.  If I can do anything please let me know.




From: Kristi Moore

Date: 10/1/2007 9:34:03 AM

To: pdrawls1956@consolidated.net


Mrs. Rawls,

First and foremost, my thoughts and prayers have been with you and your family since I heard about Dustin's passing. He was such an incredible young man that could always put a smile on any one, including a total stranger. I've had the pleasure of knowing Dustin since high school bible studies at First Baptist Church. Dustin will be greatly missed and moments cherished every day for the rest of eternity. You and your family remain in my family's thoughts and daily prayers.

May he rest in peace.

~Kristi Moore~


From: Cody Elliott

Date: 10/1/2007 9:33:35 AM

To: pdrawls1956@consolidated.net

Subject: very sorry


hello, my name is cody elliott and i went to school with dustin all my life and would like to help you out in any way that i can. i dont have alot of money to give but i do have alot of heart. please let me know how i can help you and your family out in anyway possible. i am a stay at home mom and i have all time in the world to help you. very sorry for your loss and he is safe with god now.

Dustin Marshall Rawls
September 2, 1982 - September 27, 2007
Dustin Lives on Through All The Many People that had the honor to know him!
I love you my Son!
God Blessed Me So giving you as MY SON!

Please sign the guestbook but also email me pictures and stories of your life with Dustin for us all to share.. Each and every one will be posted and appreciated.  Help me keep this site alive as Dustin is in all of our hearts.

Link to all Dustin Memory Pages