Dogs at My Father’s Funeral

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Let me start at the beginning. 

My father, in his later life, moved to a small town where guns could be fired at will when you lived in the county. Not the town, but the county.

At night, after my stepmother went to work, he would place me at watch for her taillights to disappear down the hill while he was loading his rifle. Taking his place in the garage to wait. He was waiting for the dogs … the dogs that trampled his garden every night! Soon they appeared, about six of them, quietly running from the neighbors’ backyard into his. He aimed and FIRED! The echo could be heard for miles! The dogs stopped, looked directly at him, and wagged as if they were waving at an old friend! Then they scampered off. It wasn’t that he was a bad shot … it was that he didn’t ever aim at the dogs, but in the air to “scare” them off. This went on nightly, even in the snow, until the day he died.

At his funeral one fall afternoon, we were all seated, listening to the minister praise him, feeling the cool autumn breeze, when all of a sudden a beagle appeared from out of nowhere! He started to run, and run, and run around all of us seated by the gravesite. A soft chuckle began in the crowd, then giggles, and then gales of laughter! To the minister’s surprise, someone who knew the dog story announced that dad was going to be happy wherever he was and the dogs were going to be on the move!



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