It is with great sadness that I am writing this post. A dear, dear friend of my dad’s passed away Sunday, January 16, 2011. He was the second greatest man I’ve ever knew. My dad is the first by the way.
His name was Thomas Smith. He was a good friend of my dad’s. They’ve been friends forever it seems. I loved to listen to the stories my dad and Tom use to tell of their childhood, teenage and adult years. The things they did, the adventurers they took and the things they experienced. If I had to say I would say Tom was my dad’s best friend. They were both cut from the same cloth. They both shared the love of life, horses, westerns, country music, race cars.
I have the fondest memories of Tom when I was little. I remember the curl he used to have in the middle of his forehead. He used to shave his whole head short but leave that curl. I can remember hearing him cuss. He seemed to do it a lot. After all he was a truck driver. I can remember going to visit Tom’s farm and exploring all the forbidden places. I loved every one of his horses and dogs. Even the goats. I am very fond of Tom’s second wife, Gwen. She was my mother’s best friend, but since my mother is passed on she has become my best friend, mentor.
I think one of the most vivid memories I have to Tom is dancing on his feet to the song “Bad, Bad Leroy Brown”. I still remember where we were and when it was.
Tom, is the second greatest man I ever knew because of his love for people. He never met a stranger and he loved to horse trade. Him and my dad were always bringing home something they traded for. Horses, dogs, goats and sometimes stray children. He was a very kind man, once you got over the rough, John Wayne exterior. He had a huge heart.
He is going to be sorely missed in my life as well as my dad’s. My heart and prayers go out to Gwen and his son Tommy in their time of grief.
I sing the song save a place for me to him today by Matthew West. I can’t wait to get to heaven, Tom, to see you again.
Until next time.