The Old Man
As I came out of the supermarket that sunny day, pushing my cart of
The old man was looking at the engine. I put my groceries away in my car and continued to watch the old gentleman from about twenty five feet away.
I saw a young man in his early twenties with a grocery bag in his arm,
The young man put his grocery bag into what looked like a brand new
I saw the old gentleman pull out his handkerchief and mop his brow as he went back to his car and again looked at the engine. He then went to his wife and spoke wit h her and appeared to tell her it would be okay. I had seen enough and I approached the old man. He saw me coming and stood straight and as I got near him I said, 'Looks like you're having a problem.'
He smiled sheepishly and quietly nodded his head. I looked under the hood myself and knew that whatever the problem was, it was beyond me. Looking around I saw a gas station up the road and told the old man that I would be right back. I drove to the station and went inside and saw three attendants working on cars. I approached one of them and related the problem the old man had with his car and offered to pay them if they could follow me back down and help hi m.
The old man had pushed the heavy car under the shade of a tree and appeared to be comforting his wife. When he saw us he straightened up and thanked me for my help. As the mechanics diagnosed the problem (overheated engine) I spoke with the old gentleman.
When I shook hands with him earlier he had noticed my Marine Corps ring and had commented about it, telling me that he had been a Marine too. I nodded and asked the usual question, 'What outfit did you serve with?'
He had mentioned that he served with the first Marine Division at Tarawa, Saipan, Iwo Jima and Guadalcanal . He had hit all the big ones and retired from the Corps afte r the war was over. As we talked we heard the car engine come on and saw the mechanics lower the hood. They came over to us as the old man reached for his wallet, but was stopped by me and I told him I would just put the bill on my AAA card.
He still reached for the wallet and handed me a card that I assumed had his name and address on it and I stuck it in my pocket. We all shook hands all&n bsp;round again and I said my goodbye's to his wife.
I then told the two mechanics that I would fol low them back up to the
For some reason I had gone about two blocks when I pulled over and took the card out of my pocket and looked at it for a long, long time. The name of the old gentleman was on the card in golden leaf an d under his name.. ...... 'Congressional Medal of Honor Society.'
I sat there motionless looking at the card and readi ng it over and over. I looked up from the card and smiled to no one but myself and marveled that on this day, four Marines had all come together, because one of us needed help. He was an old man all right, but it felt good to have stood next to greatness and courage and an honor to have been in his presence.
' Remember, old men like him gave you FREEDOM for America '
America is not at war.
The U.S. Military is at war.
America is at the Mall.
If you don't stand behind our troops,
PLEASE feel free to stand in front of them
8 years 5 weeks ago, 9:33 AM