Salado Press True stories about Americans

Nine Years In The Saddle

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The twin-engine plane had delivered me to a small air terminal at Springfield, Missouri, which was nearly empty. As I entered the terminal, I heard a woman whom I had never met before exclaim,

"Here he is! I found him!" She led me to a waiting television crew, which began to film this historic meeting between me and the elderly gentleman who accompanied her. Dressed in western attire from his wide-brimmed hat to his cowboy boots, his six-foot frame retained a certain vigor that belied his years. When he saw me, a smile spread across his square face illuminated by alert, penetrating blue eyes as he extended a firm hand, molded by a lifetime of hard work. While the camera rolled, the interviewer plied us with questions about my search that culminated in this meeting. This is a story of a man whom I never got to know until he was eighty-one-years-old, my father.