I mentioned yesterday we were going to a surprise birthday celebration for our dear friend, Danny Lang. He became 90 on Thursday, and due to the covert actions of the Honor Guard Captain Tom, assisted by Bryan and Leigh, Danny was welcomed by a crowd of about 50 friends of the Honor Guard. It was great.
Friday, he had a birthday parade. The Sheriff’s Department he worked for had a steady stream of deputies, complete with lights and sirens, passing him in front of his building at an assisted living community. As he told me about it, he laughed, “They should have cut the sirens, it’s not a good sound around old people.” He has a wonderful sense of humor.
It was no surprise to see a table of about ten men who were some of Danny’s fellow retirees. There was so much joy present in that room. All brought together by someone who didn’t have much of a family as a kid. He could have made some bad turns, but he didn’t. He joined the Marines as a young man. He lost fingertips to frostbite in Korea. He came home to Omaha, met and married the love of his life, and had a beautiful family. They are one of the neatest families I’ve met. He lost his wife a few years ago, and best friend Bob earlier this year. He’s slowing down a little (not much for 90, though), and he is always joyful.
He is first to tell you what he thinks, and will shake your hand after he disagrees with you. He learned to be a man’s man. Every fatherless boy should have him as a mentor, role model, and guardian angel. He entertains a line of members’ wives for hugs and kisses when he enters a room, and makes you all believe you’re the love of his life. Just for fun, nothing creepy. No one deserves it more than him.
He thanked everyone, telling us he’s had four families in his life; His own family, The Marine Corps, The Sheriff’s Department, and The VFW, especially the Honor Guard. He teaches the new guys and gently corrects the seasoned guys when they need it. Everyone should know a Danny in their life. I’m glad the Babe and I both know Danny. He’s a treasure. May he have many more birthdays.
On this cloudy Sunday morning, it’s remarkably cool outside. Might be for a couple days. That crazy humidity makes it easy to stay inside and do anything. It’s almost like inside living is about all you can do regardless of the season.
I’m finishing up my homework from my first Zoom meeting with Sam, my book coach. I try to send it ahead of her Monday morning 8 a.m. deadline, because mornings are a little crazy for me. I’d rather be early than late. A year ago, I never heard of book coaching, and now, I believe in what she’s doing for me. She’s making me a better writer. Seriously! We have three more Zoom meetings between now and September 1, so I’ll have about six weeks of good work, then we re-negotiate a contract if we decide to continue.
Thank you for reading today. I appreciate it. Do you have someone in your family or friends who needs to be celebrated? It’s a good thing to do for people who matter to us. A drive by waving hi could go pretty far for folks that can’t visit with us up close. Just keep doing what you’re doing. Be Kind. Be Thoughtful. Be Courteous. Wash Up. Mask Up. For yourself and others. This thing is far from over. I want you all around to celebrate with me when my books are published! See you tomorrow.