Many people in my paternal family are "touched" with the gift/curse of some form of psychic awareness. Some of us admit it and some do not. None of us talk about it amongst ourselves unless we find it absolutely necessary. The story I am submitting is but one of numerous personal experiences with the paranormal.
My father passed away in late November of 2002 after being ill for about two months. While he was ill, I made the 500 mile round-trip every Friday to see him. One day, we were talking about his dying and he told me that he was not at all afraid of what happened after he died but he was nervous about the process of actually "crossing over". As soon as he said that I had a vision of an angel coming out of the wall a few feet above his bed and guiding him up and out of his body. I was slightly shaken and started crying, but since we knew he was going to go quite soon that wasn't any sort of unusual behavior. I told him that an angel would surely guide him over -- that he had nothing to fear from his crossing -- and that once he was there all of his family that had gone before would be waiting to welcome him home. I didn't tell him that I had seen how it was to happen. I believe he knew though, because my words comforted him.
Several weeks later, I went to see him for the last time. He and my stepmother were planning the funeral and the music that would both usher him out and be part of the service. While we were alone in the room, he brought up the idea of an angel guiding him over and just as my stepmother entered the room said something under his breath that sounded like "funny that he wouldn't use the door". When I arrived home in the late evening, I told my husband that I didn't think there would be any more weekly trips even though my father had seemed to be doing much better when I saw him that day.
The next Thursday rolled around and I made plans as usual to be there Friday morning as soon as I could make the drive up, but I kept thinking I wouldn't be going. That night I had a dream where my nearest relatives and one man I didn't know were sitting in the room with my father. My stepmother was on the sofa doing needlepoint, my grandfather was in the glider rocker with their big old tomcat on his lap, my brother and I were sitting on the floor near the end of my father's bed and the stranger was sitting on an ottoman near my grandfather. The overhead light had been dimmed and a tape of religious music was playing. My father was lying in his bed, not at all conscious of us, fiddling with his hands as if he were trying to figure out how two parts of something went together. His breathing slowed as he fiddled away and at the point where it was several seconds between breaths an angel appeared through the wall at the same point that I had seen earlier in my vision. Finally, quietly, with no sigh or any indication of the famous "death rattle" he stopped breathing and reached out his hand for the angel to guide him.
The tape that was in the stereo suddenly went haywire and started blaring out what sounded like people speaking in tongues. This startled my stepmother who turned it off and then went over to my father. She held his hand for a long time and then crossed into the kitchen to call someone.
At this point I woke up and simultaneously started to shake my husband awake and reached for the phone. I had my hand on it and he said "what is it" just as it rang. I told him that my father had just died and then answered the phone. Sure enough, it was my stepmother. She had called me first because it was already 4:15 and she knew I got up and left the house before 5 to make it to their home in time to spend a while visiting before I had to make the drive home.
A few days later at the memorial service, I was introduced to one of my father's cousins, one that I had never met. At least I'd never met him in the waking world -- he was the man I hadn't recognized in the dream.
Afterwards, my brother and I were discussing my father's final moments with stepmom and she described my father's moments exactly as I'd seen them the night he died. So far as I know, she still has the garbled tape. I've never been able to bring myself to listen to it -- though I don't need to since I've already heard it.