Saturday, December 10, 2011

A very special day, indeed.

Today was a very special day.

About three weeks ago, I had been thinking about an old friend. He is an old friend that I had only seen once since I was in my teens.
Back then he was a man in his mid 60's....he was what I thought old was when I was younger.

Three days ago, December 7th, my local news station did a story on my old friend.

December 7th was Pearl Harbor Day.

My old friend, Mr. Roland Nee is 89 years old and he is a Pearl Harbor survivor.  He drove me to church every Sunday after my family moved too far away from church for the church van to come get me.  I remember he and I always had a lot to say to each other.  He was one of the few good men in my life.

 I knew after watching the news Wednesday evening, why he had been on my mind just a few weeks prior.  I had to see him....I honestly thought he had probably passed away. It had been a long time after all.

So this afternoon, I get in my car and head north about 30 miles. Drove right to his house, I did!  His wife, JoAnne, invited me in after I introduced myself and she remembered me.  I came around the corner of living room and there was Mr. Nee, laying on the sofa. Covers up to his neck. He is thin....a wisp of a man, but his mind is all there.

I find out that back in September, he fell and broke his hip. He gets up and down pretty well but requires a walker to get around.  He can no longer drive, either, but is sure to tell me that he got a new car back in January and was driving up until he fell.

Eighty-nine and still driving!  Holy cow.

As our visit came to an end I get out my camera....wanting to remember this moment.  A very special day.

He held my hand through our entire visit...asked me all about my life and my family. I in turn, ask him about his.
He told me he loved me and had always consider me kind of like a daughter. His wife is almost totally deaf but she shared a lot with me, too.  She got my address and phone number and as she walked me out, this is what she said..."I wanted to wait and tell you when I knew he couldn't hear me...after Roland passes on, I will be living at the Whispering Wind Assisted Living Center. You'll come visit me, won't you?"

Absolutely. I will.
And with that, we hugged and I drove away...  Cried the whole way home, damn near.


  1. What a great story! I'd love to meet them!!

  2. That's great Cyndi! Kudos....I bet you put a smile on his face.

  3. Beautiful blog post. What an amazing day you must have had, and your old friends also.

  4. So often, we think of someone from our past and think "I should call/go see them." Kudos to you for actually doing it.