Ode to a Friend
Edard has passed.
We were close friends for about 83 years. He was my best man when Peggy and I were married in 1953, and I was his best man twice, again after his first wife died of cancer.
In 1950, Edard and I joined the Air Force together. He was physically imposing, so they made him an Air Policeman. After 4 years he resigned from the military to get a degree in Hospital Management from Baylor University. The doctors at King’s Daughters Hospital in Temple were impressed with Edard so they hired him as their manager, a job his brother, Howard, held before him.
When Peggy and I threw parties in Santa Fe, Edard would sometimes drive 12 hours to attend. He usually walked in with a smile that insinuated “You must have known I would be here,” a thought that did not underestimated the depth of our friendship.
In recent years Edard’s health fell into disrepair and I watched him slowly wither. He died peacefully in the Veterans Hospital in Temple, on whose golf course we used to play. He well understood that, at age 89, his tenure on this planet was finally fading.
I shall not mourn the passing of my friend, but instead, will smile and remember the many good times we had, like when we both played big shots in a high school football game, and put plugs of Red Man chewing tobacco under our cheeks. After the first tackle we both were sick and had to leave the game. Our punishment was having to run 50 laps around the football field. We turned that penalty into a victory by running 55 laps. We sure taught that coach a lesson. Those were the good old days when our victories were small enough to match our egos.
Keen are those whose eyes were used and saw the total fruit he bore, and remember yet, whose dyes were used to make the pride he wore.
And now my life is a little emptier.
Frank Harlan (RIP) was another close high school friend who joined the AF with me and Edard. His father, Dr. “Dipok” Harlan, delivered me in the King Daughter’s Hospital in Temple. That was August 22nd, 1930. I am told I was born to politically off-set George Soros, who came along 10 days before me.
Now I think I will go out and water my trees. f