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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Write something suitable for CHILDREN (05/31/07)

TITLE: CLIMB A TREE
By Paul Potenza
06/04/07


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CLIMB A TREE

Staff Sergeant Potenza, United States Marine Corps, was dead. He had been felled by a bomb blast that had killed him and hundreds of his comrades in the city of Beirut, Lebanon during the early morning hours of the autumn of 1983.

His daughter, 10 year old Brenda, sat on her Grandfather's lap in the living room of the house in which her father had grown up. The services were over and tears were still rolling down her cheeks. She wasn't sobbing you understand, she just couldn't dry up. She leaned in on "Poppy's" warm chest and listened to his heartbeat as she had done with "Dad" a million times.

Then a remarkable conversation took place.

LISTEN!

I hate God!

Why would you say that sweetie?

Because God let Dad die. Dad loved me. He let me drive the tractor. He let me get the swimsuit I wanted. He gave me "horsey rides" and didn't mind that I wasn't "girly" when I climbed trees and he let me go fishing with him. God is mean.

The strong arms of Poppy closed around the little form of Brenda like a blanket.

God isn't mean Honey...God is love. Your Dad died protecting his country...protecting your little brothers...protecting you. God gave you your Dad so that you could feel the things that you feel...and don't forget that God gave ME your Dad too. Now dry your tears and let's go climb a tree.


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This article has been read 406 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Kristen Hester06/07/07
Very touching. I think this story would comfort a child who lost a parent.
Dee Yoder 06/10/07
Your story touches on an important reminder for us; freedom may cost a family dearly and soldiers always leave behind many who loved them and miss them always.
Beth LaBuff 06/12/07
Such an emotional topic...I wanted the little girl to be comforted. I'm glad her grandfather was there. I'm wondering if this is a true story?
Marilyn Schnepp 08/07/07
Nicely done, a story of what might have been - I am assuming. Thank goodness for grandpa's, right? Great job, as usual...a tear for the eye and a lump for the throat.