Friday, July 3, 2009

~ Old Man ~ ... God Bless Our Troops & Country

As a I came out of the supermarket that sunny day, pushing a cart of groceries towards my car, I saw an old man with the hood of his car up and a lady sitting inside the car, with the door open. 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, walking towards the old man. The old gentleman saw him coming too, and took a step towards him. I saw the old gentleman point to his open hood and say something.

The young man put his grocery bag into what looked like a brand new Cadillac Escalade and then turn back to the old man and I heard him yell at the gentleman saying, 'You shouldn't even be allowed to drive a car at your age.'

And then with a wave of his hand, he got in his car and peeled rubber out of the parking lot. 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 with 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 him.

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 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 after 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 around again and I said my goodbye's to his wife. I then told the two mechanics that I would follow them back up to the station.

Once at the station I told them that they had interrupted their own jobs to come along with me and help the old man. I said I wanted to pay for the help, but they refused to charge me.

One of them pulled out a card from his pocket looking exactly like the card the old man had given to me.
Both of the men told me then, that they were Marine Corps Reserves. Once again we shook hands all around and as I was leaving, one of them told me I should look at the card the old man had given to me. I said I would and drove off. 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 in golden leaf and under his name 'Congressional Medal of Honor Society.'

I sat there motionless looking at the card and reading 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. Thanks to those who served...and those who supported them.

Please support & pray for our troops. (I should have added this was a story told to us by a friend, not either of us, sorry ladies)


  1. This post brought tears to my eyes. When my husband and I were first married he was a Marine, and served 4 years in the Corps. To this day a sense of brotherhood is instantaneous whenever he meets another Marine. My Grandfather was also a Marine and served in WW2. I am so grateful to all of our service men and women and to their families for their sacrifice so that we can have freedom.

    Thank you for writing such a poignant and thought provoking post. As my husband would say Ooh-Rah! :-)

  2. What a beautiful and inspiring post. I am so glad that you were there :)


  3. Wow..what a story. I didn't know you were a Marine! What a wonderful story, and yet a sad commentary on the young man who just yelled at the old gentleman...

  4. Thanks for sharing that wonderful story. A very special tribute to a very special group of people. May God Bless America.

  5. I have goose bumps!!! This story is so should share it with Spiritual Sundays this weekend being the 4th of July! The hostesses are Charolette and Ginger;
    I CAN believe the guy in the fancy SUV! Unfortunately, it seems there are more heartless people like him than people like you!! Bravo to you (and I know that's not why you shared this post, to get the glory) for listening to the Holy Spirit whisper to you to go help him out! You went the extra mile! Well done! Blessings! My nephew is in the Navy....he 20 yrs. old. Luanne

  6. Marydon~
    What a wonderful testimony to brother/sisterhood! I am so glad God had you there right where you needed to be. Thank you for sharing!!

  7. Wonderful story as always Marydon. Happy 4th of July to you!!
    ♥ Teresa

  8. A beautiful and touching story, it's what makes this country so great, the wonderful people!

  9. I love that post, Marydon. I hope you and your loved ones have a happy and safe July 4th.
    Hugs from Florida,

  10. A wonderful story. As far as the man in the new Escalade, how shallow, and uncaring he must be.


  11. Marydon...this is beautiful and a very touching gave me goose bumps and brought tears to my eyes....hugs, Linda

    p.s. I'm a 50's gal too:)...L

  12. It sure is scary to think about getting old and helpless.

  13. What a gorgeous story, as I sit here teary eyed. And shame on the idiot in the Escalade. (I hope he reads this!) He will have to answer to his Maker someday.
    I hope I have taught my kids to respect their elders - no matter what the situation. I always said "What if that were your Gramma or Grampa?" and it seems to have done the trick. I see both of them doing things for people that make me proud. Sometimes it is the simplest thing . . .

    Thank you so much for sharing this story!
    Happy Independence Day!

  14. A beautiful post, as usual.

  15.'s been an emotional day today....I might be able to make some sense......when I'm done sobbing!

    Happy Independence Day Sweet Gal!


  16. Hi and it's so nice to meet you! What a wonderful story! It really touched me! God bless you and have a wonderful fourth of July!
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  17. Oh what a wonderful story..
    I love it ..patriotic

    and SOMEONE(his parents) needed to teach that
    young man in the Cadillac some

  18. I'm crying, too. Blessings to all who gave so much to keep America free, and especially to all who are giving so much right now.

  19. I married my Marine at 17 when he returned from Korea. Then Viet Nam came. Once a Marine always a Marine is very true. Marines take care of their own.
    What a nice story.

  20. This is beautiful. It gave me shivers. Thanks for sharing this and have a wonderful 4th of July. I'll think of that old Marine tomorrow and have a little smile!

  21. That was so beautiful, My brother was a Marine and the saying is once a Marine always a Marine. I am so proud of the men and women serving this country past and present...I have nothing but respect for those that help others on duty or off duty regardless if they are in the service or not. Thank you for sharing that story, we have alot we can learn from our elders once they are gone so are their stories and their wisdom....Happy 4th of July! Hugs, Jennifer

  22. This was a lovely post, very touching.

  23. Another wonderful inspirational story. Thanks so much for sharing!

  24. what a beautiful day it must have been for all..I am sure that moment will never be forgotten. To every 4 persons there are 3 good ones and that is what is important there is still good in the world. Thank you for sharing a wonderful moment with us.