This week, I want to honor a person from my neighborhood.
There was a gentleman who lived two houses over from ours, and he had many times mowed my lawn without any asking on my part. There was a neighbor who gave me advice and had repaired my car without any asking on my part. There was a person who kept a watchful eye on our home whenever we were away – and not only the house but also any place on our property. One person in the winter came over and used his snow blower to clear my driveway and walks. Many times I had looked up while in the garden and seen someone working right along side me.
Right here I have to tell you that all these gentlemen were just one person who had been there for me and my family for a very long time. I also have to tell you that he was my younger brother.
Here was a man who had through the years made sure he had checked on his brothers and sisters and always was ready to help someone when needed. He had been my buddy at the ball games and a solid Kokomo Wildkat fan. The Chicago Cubs had been his favorite baseball team through thick and thin, whether they lost or won. He had never been one to beat around the bush when he thought you needed his advice. Being the next to last child in our family, he was always there for Mom and Dad, and he would never say anything negative about his brothers and sisters.
About six years ago he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and had an operation to try and get rid of it. During those six years, he had always been positive about winning this war against cancer, and we are proud of him for the way that he had lived the years since first finding out he had cancer.
About a little over four months ago, he was told by a doctor he only had three months to live. This started him on a road of hope that slammed to the ground. Without hope you have no way to fight it. It is my opinion and mine only that no one should ever dash the hopes of a brave man or woman who lives on that hope to get well.
Well, anyway, he started going downhill after that, but he kept saying he would one day go to a Kokomo Wildkat game with me. There was a desire in this fine brother who tried with all his might to conquer this fight of his life.
He passed away the other evening, and God stretched out his arms and said, “Welcome Home, my son.” We will miss that great person known to me as my brother, my buddy, my mechanic, my gardener, and my good friend. Never will I ever have another buddy like him, because he was one of a kind. He will be missed by the brothers and sisters who survive his passing.
But he will be in glory with the brothers and sisters who preceded his passing. And what a wonderful reunion with Mom and Dad.
We will always remember him as one who wanted to help others, and for the path he walked. There will be times when we will think of him as that great little man with a big heart. There will be times when we wish we still have him with us, but what better place for one such as he than being held in the arms of our Lord.
Thanks, Russell, for the memories. Thanks for being you, and thanks for our buddy days spent with each other.
Ray “Uncle Ray” Day is a weekly contributor to the Kokomo Tribune. Contact him at email@example.com.
This week, I want to honor a person from my neighborhood.
- MAUREEN HAYDEN: Hoosier Survey results: predictable, surprising Every year at about this time, State-house reporters like me ask lawmakers what their priorities will be for the coming year. The more interesting inquiry is made by the people at Ball State's Bowen Center for Public Affairs, because they ask Hoosier
- TOM LoBIANCO: No apparent end to Pence, Ritz communication woes Wel- come to Indi-ana's own "Cold War," a tit-for-tat fight over education more akin to some-thing out of Dr. Seuss' "The Butter Battle Book" than high-brow statesmanship. Democratic Schools Superintendent Glenda Ritz surprised watchers last week whe
- WOLFISE: Black mark On Black Friday I was dealing with some severe back pain. What with the giant screen TVs, the treadmills, and the new furniture … well, I never should have carried in all those newspaper ads from the front porch in one trip. My wife and I have always
GOODNIGHT: A thanks to all who assisted our town
On Sunday, Nov. 17, two tornadoes ripped through the city of Kokomo, leaving extensive damage and devastation in their wake. Immediately, hundreds of volunteers within our community and throughout the state reached out ...
- VASICEK: Weddings, ribbon cuttings, and sauerkraut Today’s column surveys some highlights in my recent crazy life. The craziness isn’t recent, just the particular highlights. My son and his fiancee were scheduled to get married the Saturday after Thanksgiving (and did). But about a week and a half be
- DAY: How did we survive? The other day while shopping for some goodies to fill up the empty spaces of our pantry, a nice man came up to me and asked if I was Ray Day. I said, "Yes, I am." He said he knew me back in the old days. I lived on the east side of the railroad and h
Indiana’s infant mortality rate awful
Too many Hoosier babies are being mourned at funerals instead of being celebrated on their first birthdays, prompting a new statewide initiative to eliminate infant mortality.
HAMILTON: Why can’t Congress aim higher on reforms?
Congressional budget negotiators are moving to meet a Dec. 13 deadline to produce, well, something. For weeks, we’ve been told to keep expectations low.
BENNETT: Letter from coach’s daughter put holiday, pro sports in order
Terry Leonard wanted the executives to remember her dad, and their family, at Christmastime.
And, amazingly, they listened.
House of Burgess: (Bloody) Black (and blue) Friday
When I filed my Black Friday column Nov. 21, 2012, “Caveat emptor; seriously, be careful,” I outlined my previous affinity for the traditional beginning of the Christmas shopping season. I still enjoy Thanksgiving, but my fondness for Black Friday waned considerably after the Great Recession hit. After which, both consumers and retailers took the gloves off.
- More Columns Headlines