Kathy Brigman Haupt:
Author and Composer, Welcome Home

This jewel of a song was written and composed in her head by Ms. Kathy Brigman Haupt in the early 1980's. (She slightly revised the original words for one phrase a few years later when she recorded it with David on the way to David's mother's memorial, and that is the version of words used on this recording.)

Since it was not written down, it has only been heard by a few on the occassions she performed it for family memorials. Happily with her permission, this version is both transcribed and recorded for the general public.

Very special thanks to Ms. Brigman Haupt for granting permission both for David to include this song, and to create the new vocal and instrumental arrangements used.

Why This Song Is Included

Althought this is not a traditional hymn, David's mother wanted it included on this album of their favorites because of the strong emotional feelings she had for this song. Presumably those were both because it was written for her sister's memorial, and because it is such a hauntingly beautiful song. David's mother was so taken by the personalness of this song that when Ms. Brigman Haupt (David's mother's grand-niece) sent a framed copy of the original words to David's mother, they were hung in a personal place on her bedroom wall. They remained there until she died and David obtained them.

Of course Ms. Brigman Haupt made the trip from South Carolina to sing this song at David's mother's memorial service in Annapolis, which is when she recorded it with David so he actually had a copy.

How the Song Came to Be

Some years ago before she was married, Ms. Brigman Haupt was recruited from her church in Columbia, South Carolina by David's father to become youth minister at their Southern Baptist church in Annapolis. She accepted and served in that capacity for a year. (She met her future husband there.)

While serving as the youth minister in Annapolis, Ms. Brigman Haupt lived with David's parents.  During that year her paternal grandmother, Ms. Fern Brigman, as part of her lifelong role of helping others, went to help out another granddaughter, and cousin to Ms. Brigman Haupt, in Alaska while that granddaughter had an operation.

Ms. Fern Brigman died very suddenly and unexpectedly while on that trip in Alaska.  Because she was very close to her grandmother, Ms. Brigman Haupt wrote the words and music for this song as a tribute for her grandmother's memorial, David's aunt.

It was Ms. Brigman Haupt's cousin in Alaska who had a few framed copies of the song's original version artistically prepared, one of which Ms. Brigman Haupt sent to David's mother.

Ms. Brigman Haupt's Feelings for Writing This Song

She recalled her feelings at the moment of being notified her grandmother had died unexpectedly, as being – 

When I was told grandmother had died while in Alaska helping my cousin Donna, it was sudden and shocking.  As I sat in my office at church the morning after her death, I was filled with sorrow.  Looking out the window at a beautiful, crisp sky, I began to think about how things must now look from Grandmother's point of view.  I was so sad, but grandmother was in the presence of God.  I began to scribble my thoughts on paper and put them to a tune.

I thought of her joys of flying above and beyond our human body's limitations; no more aches and pains; hearing the voice of God call your name, not in a fearful way, but as a beloved child He has been waiting for to come home. I thought of all my grandmother had done for the Lord in her life, and her sincere love for God. God had showed me his love through her life, and I could imagine His joy at her well lived life. And so, the song became a tribute.

After Writing the Song

After a year as the Youth Minister in Annapolis, Ms. Brigman Haupt returned to Columbia, South Carolina, where she returned to being:

Changes for This Arrangement

Ms. Brigman Haupt's version of the song was necessarily written so she could perform it. Thus the original version was for:

The arrangement on this recording made the following adaptations:

  1. A new acoustic guitar accompaniment was written;
  2. Harmony parts for Acoustic guitar and string bass were written and added;
  3. The verses remain a solo representing the person who is sad to have lost a loved one -
  4. The choruses/refrains are revised to be multi-harmony women's choruses to symbolically represent heaven welcoming the loved one to heaven.

The artists greatly enjoyed the opportunity of creating the arrangements and recording this jewel of a song.


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