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Walt Longmire

An old man I know is dying, a neighbor.

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I'm not sure how old he is. Maybe pushing 80. His wife died a few years ago. He has one son in the military and another that is living on the streets in Anchorage when he isn't in jail. I've known the old man for 35 years. He has been good to me, and has even spent time at my remote cabin. We explored the wilds of the Refuge on snow machines way back in the day when they weren't the same machines we ride today. No electronics to tell us where we were. Just topo maps and a compass. He loved exploring. He lives just around the corner from me. He's in the local hospital and told me he isn't sure if he can have visitors due to the covid bull****. He hasn't been a saint, but I hate to think of him dying alone. His son (the one in the military) is on his way home. I called him (the son) a bit ago, and he was in Seattle switching planes. The old man has prostate cancer and it's in his bones. I have had a couple uncles die of that. Very painful. 

I'm not posting looking for sympathy for me. Just some kind words, thoughts, and prayers for an old man. 

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May God give him strength and peace.

Always remember, Christ didn't die to save saints, he died to save sinners so they could live with Him as saints for eternity.

 

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Hopefully he can find a balance of pain control and sentience when his son arrives. May they have the conversation they need to have, and then he passes peacefully. 

I'm sorry for the loss of your friend. It really sucks when you have decades with someone, and then they're gone. 

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He's probably lonely.  Cook for him a meal or two.  Spend time and bs together.  Be a positive fun distraction.  Free up some time to do things for him, so he can spend more time with his son.  

 

Couple of years ago, I had an 89yo freind pass.  He had a son in town that saw him 2x day coming and going to work.  I would try to stop over and spend time to visit.  And occupy his day, once a week.  

Ask God what you could do for him.  

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Sounds like you and him had a lot of fun together back in the day.  Bet he's still got a hell of a lot of Stories to tell...Hopefully, you'll be able to spend some time with him and hear a few more.  God bless ya.  And Him too.  Prayers.

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I think of this with increasing frequency as my time grows closer and friends and relatives go on ahead...

The Sandbar - Travis McGee (John D McDonald)

Picture a very swift torrent, a river rushing down between rocky walls. There is a long, shallow bar of sand and gravel that runs right down the middle of the river. It is under water. You are born and you have to sand on that narrow, submerged bar, where everyone
stands. The ones born before you, the ones older than you, are upriver from you. The younger ones stand braced on the bar downriver. And the whole long bar is slowly moving down that river of time, washing away at the upstream end and building up downstream.

Your time, the time of all your contemporaries, schoolmates, your loves and your adversaries, is that part of the shifting bar on which you stand. And it is crowded at first. You can see the way it thins out, upstream from you. The old ones are washed away and their bodies go swiftly by, like logs in the current. Downstream where the younger ones stand thick, you can see them flounder, lose footing, wash away. Always there is more room where you stand, but always the swift water grows deeper, and you feel the shift of the sand and the gravel under your feet as the river wears it away. Someone looking for a safer place can nudge you off balance, and you are gone. Someone who has stood beside you for a long time gives a forlorn cry and you reach to catch their hand, but the fingertips slide away and they are gone.


There are the sounds in the rocky gorge, the roar of the water, the shifting, gritty sound of sand and gravel underfoot, the forlorn cries of despair as the nearby ones, and the ones upstream, are taken by the current. Some old ones who stand on a good place, well braced, understanding currents and balance, last a long time. A Churchill, fat cigar atilt, sourly amused at his own endurance and, in the end, indifferent to rivers and the rage of waters. Far downstream from you are the thin, startled cries of the ones who never got planted, never got set, never quite understood the message of the torrent.
*****

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Dying alone is what bothers me the most about this dreaded virus. A peaceful passing surrounded and comforted by love ones is what we all hope for.

I'm sorry if this is the case for your neighbor. Is this the guy across the street and around the little corner? If so, you've always been a good friend to him and Im sure your calls are appreciated and comforting.

May his transition from this life be peaceful.

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16 hours ago, Zonny said:

Dying alone is what bothers me the most about this dreaded virus. A peaceful passing surrounded and comforted by love ones is what we all hope for.

I'm sorry if this is the case for your neighbor. Is this the guy across the street and around the little corner? If so, you've always been a good friend to him and Im sure your calls are appreciated and comforting.

May his transition from this life be peaceful.

It's the old man with the collection of treasures he will never sell. The junk yard. 

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6 minutes ago, Walt Longmire said:

It's the old man with the collection of treasures he will never sell. The junk yard. 

Oh my. Now his son gets to deal with all that. :( 

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20 hours ago, railfancwb said:

I think of this with increasing frequency as my time grows closer and friends and relatives go on ahead...

The Sandbar - Travis McGee (John D McDonald)

Picture a very swift torrent, a river rushing down between rocky walls. There is a long, shallow bar of sand and gravel that runs right down the middle of the river. It is under water. You are born and you have to sand on that narrow, submerged bar, where everyone
stands. The ones born before you, the ones older than you, are upriver from you. The younger ones stand braced on the bar downriver. And the whole long bar is slowly moving down that river of time, washing away at the upstream end and building up downstream.

Your time, the time of all your contemporaries, schoolmates, your loves and your adversaries, is that part of the shifting bar on which you stand. And it is crowded at first. You can see the way it thins out, upstream from you. The old ones are washed away and their bodies go swiftly by, like logs in the current. Downstream where the younger ones stand thick, you can see them flounder, lose footing, wash away. Always there is more room where you stand, but always the swift water grows deeper, and you feel the shift of the sand and the gravel under your feet as the river wears it away. Someone looking for a safer place can nudge you off balance, and you are gone. Someone who has stood beside you for a long time gives a forlorn cry and you reach to catch their hand, but the fingertips slide away and they are gone.


There are the sounds in the rocky gorge, the roar of the water, the shifting, gritty sound of sand and gravel underfoot, the forlorn cries of despair as the nearby ones, and the ones upstream, are taken by the current. Some old ones who stand on a good place, well braced, understanding currents and balance, last a long time. A Churchill, fat cigar atilt, sourly amused at his own endurance and, in the end, indifferent to rivers and the rage of waters. Far downstream from you are the thin, startled cries of the ones who never got planted, never got set, never quite understood the message of the torrent.
*****

Wow!  I've read a few of the McGee Series by McDonald, but never saw that quote. That's very Cool. Think I would have remembered that.  My Dad read and had Every single one of the Travis McGee Series.  McDonald died in 86 and my Dad passed in 2001.  I was a fool for giving most of his pocket book collection away, but...It's a hard time when you have to clean out after your folks pass.  Anyway, it went to a good place.  I donated most of his collections to a few retirement communities in our area.  Most highly appreciated I can tell ya. 

Anyway....thanks for the memories of "Travis McGee"!!

Tough Guy Lit: John D. MacDonald's Travis McGee Series — Writer's Bone

21 Thrilling Colors of Travis McGee - Sketchbook Time Machine

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I should have included a more specific reference for the Travis McGee quote...

This metaphor for life and death from Pale Gray for Guilt (1968), one of John D. MacDonald’s Travis McGee novels, came to mind the other day. I looked it up, and here it is for easy reference. 

https://www.miskatonic.org/2014/12/12/the-sandbar/

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That's sad, Walt. I hope he gets to have people he knows around him. Best wishes to all.

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Talked to the son this morning. Old man can't have ANY visitors due to Covid. No, he doesn't have covid. Neither does the son, or I. If he gets listed as critical he can supposedly have visitors. Don't know if that would only be family. Well, I have fibbed about family connections before to visit someone. Guess I could do it again.

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Life is a one way ride.  No one gets out alive.  That being said, Godspeed to him. 

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14 hours ago, Walt Longmire said:

Talked to the son this morning. Old man can't have ANY visitors due to Covid. No, he doesn't have covid. Neither does the son, or I. If he gets listed as critical he can supposedly have visitors. Don't know if that would only be family. Well, I have fibbed about family connections before to visit someone. Guess I could do it again.

Problem is, unless you’re tested daily, you don’t know if you have it or not. I don’t think any of us are going to avoid it. It’s just a matter of when. 

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