I attended a funeral at my Church (St. Boniface, Siesta Key) this morning. It was for a wonderful man named Joe Hinds (1924-2013). I always loved to greet Joe and his wife Nancy after services, so was happy to be able to show my respect and love for Nancy this morning.
At the reception which followed the service I chatted with another of my favourite parishioners Carolyn W. I said that I had seen (but not been able to greet) her Marine son, Jody.
Jody is just back from a tour in Afghanistan with the Marine Corps Special Forces.
Some of you will have read in the British and American press about the young American couple who were on their honeymoon in Australia this week. They sky-dived (the wife in tandem), and the husband, an experienced jumper went solo.
Something dreadful happened on the way down, and as a result the husband was killed. I glanced at this story and thought: "how awful, to die as a result of an accident on one's honeymoon".
My life went on. It's going on so very painfully for the wife, Cherilyn.
The husband's name is Brandon. He is also a Marine who had just returned from Afghanistan and got married on leave.
His death was "brought home to me" today. For you see , our good parishioner Jody was in the same 30 man unit in Afghanistan with Brandon. They were close buddies in a very cohesive special forces group.
Jody is hurting like hell. Pray for him, for his fellow Marines in that unit, and for Cherilyn. The Military is sending 'plane to bring her and her husband's remains back to the States.