Mr. Walker

Mr. Walker is a remarkable man.  He is a (90) year old WWII veteran, married only days before he departed for the Pacific in 1941.  He was gone for three years and returned home to his wife when his duties had concluded.  The couple raised three children.

He came to see me because a scam real estate fund had bilked him out of most of his life savings.  We have been working now for several years to recover the money.  We've had breakfast a few times since we first met.  He likes a couple eggs and potatoes - but gets charmingly flustered at all the options that come with ordering breakfast, wheat vs. white, fried vs scrambled, etc.  It has been a pleasure getting to know Mr. Walker.  Today at breakfast he told me a little about the Honor Flight trip that he recently took to Washington DC, and of one of the other men on the trip who died the day after the flight.  It was as if that man had one more thing to do before his business here was concluded.  Walker is one of the last of a generation that is slowly going on home.

We discussed his living situation today and he told me that his home is up for sale.  I asked why he didn't just move to a retirement home and let the house go.  He smiled ever so gently - almost looking around to see if anyone saw him.  "I thought about that," he said in hushed whispers, "but something just won't let me do it."  I felt embarrassed for even suggesting something that was beneath his moral code.  It got me thinking about the character of this man, and how it seems that there is a wide gap between how we do things today and how things are done by some of the old guard - men like Mr. Walker.  It was a reminder that I need to watch my conduct closely. 

Walker still makes it to his house of worship each week. 

Oswald Chambers reminds us for today, "Stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free."  Gal. v. 1.  I wonder if Mr. Walker leads a life largely free because he has clung to his spiritual freedom.  Doctrinal and differing faiths aside - do we as a nation often willingly submit to the slavery of spiritual deadness?

I have wondered whether and how war makes men and women more aware.  Was there just a different social fabric in Walker's earlier years?  Perhaps we are amongst a new great generation these days as well.  This week was a big one for the American war with Al Qaeda.  I was struck by a sense of gratitude for the bravery of men and women who helped carry out the mission we have heard so much about.  Character is forged in the fire - national and personal.  I hope that the backbone shown by guys like Mr. Walker will continue to be seen in the men and women of this nation.  If so, I think we will be just fine.


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