Yea, seriously. On the one of the very first days that we were here, one of the parents of a patient located across the hall (at the time) approached my Dad when I was down visiting Ahna. She asked about our last name….inquiring because she had the same last name. It’s obvious that there are other families out there also with the Briese name (although it’s not like Johnson or Smith), but I had never met any of them, let alone randomly ran into one of the them.
This family (still here as well) lives on a working farm in southwest Montana. They have lived there for generations, and it’s possible that we can loosely trace our roots back far enough to find the same distant relatives that came from Germany/Poland. They do do one thing rather differently….how the name is pronounced. We say it like ‘breeze’ and they say it like ‘breezee’. The Mom that we met was able to bring us a historical book that they put together for a relative tracing a lot of that person’s life – we took it and made a few copies before returning it. One of the things in the book was the family coat-of-arms (posted below), which looks familiar and different at the same time. I did a family history essay way back in high school and got our coat-of-arms from a relative…it could be the same, but I can’t remember. It’s a strange and unique thing to be in the middle of the NICU at The Children’s Hospital in Denver, meeting a distant family relative from Montana.
Of note: due to the lack of facility like this in a large multi-state region, a lot of folks come here from a lot of places…like Montana. These friends that we have made have set up shop in the Ronald McDonald house just up the street – so if you are looking for something to donate to, or just wondered if that loose change at the restaurant actually goes somewhere; consider that foundation as a good and worthy cause. It does really matter.
PS – Voltus In Hostem means ‘face to the enemy.’