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Lendon Murrell

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Jesse James

That same farm at one point became mine as my father had passed and my mother was in a nursing home several miles away. I had left my career in the city and moved back home the week my dad passed as my siblings and I knew our mother would need daily support. During the week of the funeral my nephew spoke to me asking for permission to stay with his grandmother and myself. He had some trouble with friends back home and he wanted to break his connections with those influences. To me it was the greatest gift I received in those years. My nephew was growing to be the most like my father of all the grandchildren. He had an easy going personality and eyes that glinted with the family humor. He was a young adult and I felt he would be good for my mother and myself so I said yes.

One thing I have never learned to do is to keep my thoughts to myself. I was like my father in that we both talked to ourselves out loud working out mechanical issues, family news, state news, or on some new trail our brains had high jacked us. So somewhere in my ramblings I remember telling my nephew I was considering whether to get a pup as a new farm dog. My fathers dog was elderly still keeping watch but as usual I talked about the idea and then completely forgot about it as the many concerns after my dads’ death consumed my time.

It was a month or so after getting home that my nephew Jimmy’s pickup came up the road and he walked to me while I was weeding the thirty by one hundred foot garden. He had a foolish grin and those eyes sparkled. I asked him what was up and from behind his back he produced a border collie pup, black with white accents. I went from one half second of “not a puppy to care for” to gathering him in my arms. That was that. Jesse was the healing spirit we all needed. Having delivered the pup my nephew was done with his part and left after saying hello to his grandmother.

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