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The Soldier Who Wore Gray

In memory of George Edward Hargenrader
by Janice Tindle

The soldier who wore gray
Lay still in front of me,
There was no reason for him to stay.
The color in him had ceased to be,
And the only thing left was a shadow of gray.
For many years he carried me,
Through trial and storms and agony,
For many years I carried him completely,
Though he never realized my sustainability.
But from down the aisle, to down the block,
We had walked together in quiet harmony,
And though he thought he was our rock,
He was nothing short of constant calamity.
From the Solomon Islands, to the shores of home,
He kept his distance from the setting sun,
From the time I was born he was never alone,
But now in gray, his life was done.
He was frail and chiseled, his bones shone through,
A regalness I witnessed upon his face,
I was paralyzed with grief, there was nothing left to do,
But to bury the soldier in gray that time would never erase.
My father had Parkinson's, a stroke, Lewy body dementia, dementia, and a brain tumor. He died from a seizure after brain surgery.  My mother and I took care of him for seven years. It was an honor.
 In memory of George Edward Hargenrader.




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