Sadness in the Wind

The small plane stands out in the vastness of the blue West Texas sky. As the scream of the turbines dies, a somber silence blankets the air, only the uncontrollable sobbing cries of a grieving mother can be heard over the constant wind, buffeting through the bunched groups of family and friends.

An eternity passes before the door opens with a crack and six soldiers carried a seventh across the blazing white tarmac. The family touches the flag-draped casket as it glides into the hearse.

Along the open highway roughnecks, ranchers and oil men all stop. Some get out of their trucks, hold their hats against their chest and stand at attention as the procession rolls past. Later, in town, eight thousand people stand along the road in total silence as the war-battered body of a young man passes into the city limits for the last time. School children are bussed to the short route to stand with flags and learn what it means to be a patriot.

As a father grieves quietly, the body of Cpl. Ray Michael Bevel makes it's final sojourn.


Kathryn Usher said...

Shane, I'm so sorry for your loss.