For many years i have talked to this old pappy who's daughter,sons and grandsons I have made friends with. Just last Saturday i was invited to his 97 birthday party as i stopped and picked up a Dairy Queen gift certificate since he loved sitting there by himself eating his hotdogs and french fries. At his arrival I was lucky enough to help him out of his car that he still drives and place his two canes carefully on the ground so he could lift himself out to the many that attended his surprise party. With
a hand shake to this WWII P.O.W. his smile was seen from all…….
As he made his way to each and every one before eating he once again made it up the small hilly terrain where me and his grandson where cooking the burgers and the ribs with a stack of endless hotdogs again his favorite dish. He greeted everyone but us twice….He sat on the glider as he opened all his simple and moderate presents and once again thanked everyone for attending..The party lasted 4 hours and at 9:00 PM he headed towards his car to leave.. Telling me Thank You, that he would not attend next year?????????????????
This Friday the grandson called me and explained the day his grandfather had as he drove his grizzly Quad 1.5 miles up the road to his daughters home where the party was, had dinner as he did so for the past 10 years that i knew him,sat outside as usual after finishing and as the skies dropped rain he mentioned to all that he should get home before it gets worse. Now every one knows that grandpap never needed any help in traveling home so they sent him off in the dark as it rained and he made his way home safe as usual. Picked up the mail from the road box and parked the 4 wheeler in the garage for the night. A few minutes later as he read his mail the daughter got a call from her 97 year old pappy and told her he wasn't feeling so good. As the daughter drove down and opened the door she found him still with his work boots on and smiling but not breathing…He passed….
As i said i got the news Friday and saved this small story for a special day like today
Memorial Day..He was a WWII prisoner of war for over two years and endured many hardships in his capture. He was the spirt of America as every Veteran has been. May God Bless Ralph Wright And All Today On This Special Day………
Last edited by Earl Easter; 05-31-2010 at 01:34 PM.
Ahh he was a great fella and believe it or not we had many things in common despite the age difference. I will miss him as much as i miss my own pap and wished him off after i had heard the news that he would touch hands with my dad,a WWII Vet as well..
Thanks ArkansasHunter,Mike and all that read and post. I was very fond of him and all jokes aside that i had shared with AH about him was true. What a large piece of History I have lost as a friend,a very sad day as well as a happy eventful day for those that still serve........
And what a way to go after doing what he wanted to do just living his own life. Sounds like he was independent up to the end.
Lost my Dad two years ago this month, another old WarII vet as well. Ain't too many of emleft.
"I only use my gun whenever kindness fails"
Forbidden fruits create many jams
I finally pulled the soft warm blanket of peace and calm to my heart, and wanted to say, thank you for sharing, and may the Good Lord keep him near at hand. His service on Earth is done, and he is with God, and his fellow comrades. Rather than grieve, may we rejoice in his rebirth, and know that he is at last without pain and sorrow. The reward for selfless service and sacrifice has finally been granted to Mr. Ralph Wright, a WW2 veteran. Thank you Lord, for accepting another of the Greatest Generation!
That was a heartwarming story, Earl. Thanks for sharing it with us. As I get older(72 now) maybe I'm more appreciative of people who have enjoyed life to it's fullest. Some are maybe lucky...some were born with good genes...some weren't and that's sad. The one's I admire the most are people who keep finding interesting things to do...and as much as possible stay out of their rocking chairs. My brother in law retired, sat in his chair...and just last week at the age of 75 died...with colon cancer. So...I'm heading to his memorial service this Thursday. Maybe that's why I keep myself occupied with new challanges...keep traveling...keep finding projects which I enjoy doing...and definitely enjoy my guns and getting to hunt deer and turkeys with my sons in law.
It's always wonderful to have a neighbor like that. I once had a neighbor who was a WWII mechanic working on Corsairs and such. Fixed up my ole Daisy rifle once and I'll never forget it OR his example. A true salute for all who serve and have served.
A very touching story Earl. We are now losing these heroes to go to God, and to enjoy the peace they so justly deserve. They are handing Old Glory off to us. To continue the good fight. I only hope we can do half the job they did. Rest In Peace old soldier. We will meet you on the High Ground !!
__________________ I keep tellin ya Doc, I'm in pretty good shape considerin the shape I'm in !!