If tonight’s sky is darker yet the moon seems brighter, it might be because heaven has gained a guiding star.
The Abrazo community knew him as “Grandpa Bruce.” He wasn’t really everybody’s grandfather, of course. But he was “grandpa” to the adoptive family who brought their grandmother and him to Camp Abrazo each summer, and because they were so dear to share him, he became Grandpa Bruce to all of us, as well.
Bruce Berger was a great man, yet always very humble. He was a loyal son and a beloved husband, father and grandfather. Bruce was born, adopted, and bred in Texas, and he truly embodied the very best of Texan values. He made his own way in life, but never failed to quietly “pay it forward,” that others might find success, as well.
As an adoptee, Bruce wholeheartedly supported his wife Pat’s daughter and her husband when they adopted through Abrazo, twice. Bruce and Pat then began attending Camp with the family. It was there that Grandpa Bruce heard author Sherrie Eldridge talk about adoptees searching for their truth. That inspired Bruce to launch a late-life search for the birthmother he’d never known, having grown up with a closed adoption.
He found his birthmom, right here in Texas. She was elated to reconnect with the son she’d never forgotten… and the only child she’d ever had. He brought his elderly-but-spry birthmom to Camp, too (along with her sister/s) for the next few years, until her passing. Their reunion was precious to them both, and our Camp Abrazo community felt privileged to have shared in their time together.
Bruce and his wife Pat continued to support Abrazo’s mission, over the years, through their annual giving. Few people knew that they’d spent countless hours gathering prizes to contribute to the annual Camp raffle each summer, and raising funds for the Angel Account even when they weren’t able to attend.
Bruce faced a cancer diagnosis late last year with courage and grace, and with his devoted wife Pat at his side every step of the way. His family had surely hoped for the best, yet when the end came, there was no doubt that Bruce Berger had waged a valiant battle and was leaving the world a better place for having been here.
Abrazo is grateful to have had a guiding star like Grandpa Bruce, whose memory shall continue to be a blessing to all of us who knew him.