Celebrating and commemorating our veterans. United States military veterans and their families.

February…A Heartfelt Month – Gig Line #220


By Marsha M. Brown

Everybody knows that when you lose someone you love the grief their vacancy brings into your life is immeasurable. So much is different and ‘in your face’ with each passing day. New challenges present themselves frequently, in particular important business decisions are now ‘solo’ decisions sometimes accompanied by second guessing and a hope that you made the right decision that your loved one would have favored.

Of course as adults, we’re capable of making decisions on our own…but the respect we had for our heart-string partner…their views…their good judgment on matters of importance…are still importance even now. As a widow or widower, an empty seat across the table stares at you, that empty side of the bed that for decades gave rest to that special one who shared your secrets, your sweet kisses and cuddles…and holiday celebrations too and when you reflect back on years past…the fresh reality that they are gone forever floods your mind and the tears fall hard and fast. This Valentine’s Day 2017 was the first without him; last year on February 17th was his first brain MRI and February 22nd the very bad news it was terminal. But…even still the beautiful past memories together; the single red roses and sweet cards with few but simple loving words are still here to enjoy. And my sister Donna, wanting to include me in her and my brother-in-law Randey’s celebration asked me to dinner at her house. At the head of my place setting was a beautiful single long stemmed red rose…she did it for Billy. 

Recently going in to an appointment, I was asked by the receptionist ‘K’ how I was doing. I told her that for the most part I was doing O.K. but that I missed Billy terribly. Before we finished talking and on the way out I told her that ‘GIG LINE’ meant a lot to Billy and that if I failed to get it into the paper on time (computer problems etc.), I knew Billy would “have a fit”. I also added that while I always tried to include veteran related event schedules such as V.F.W., American Legion, Dare County Veterans Advisory Council meetings and info about the Veteran I. D. Card, I felt compelled to write about Billy…that I just couldn’t help it; I loved to write about Billy and his love for fellow veterans…and most especially about my love for him. I shared with her that I knew a lot of folks who read GIG LINE heard much about my true love, his illness and passing last July but that I just couldn’t help it. And how she replied touched my heart beyond words. It was something to the effect of “Keep on writing about Billy. It keeps him alive in all of us”. If you’re reading this GIG LINE ‘K’…thank you for that.

Thank you for understanding that my love for him is as deep as ever…that seven months ago my life (like all widows & widowers) changed for ever…and that I can’t ever imagine not wanting to write about him, his love, his service to our country and his will to serve his comrades for as long as he was able. In essence, I was surprised by what ‘K’ had said and so moved…and by all means so appreciative. I love you ‘K’

The date for the upcoming annual spring Outer Banks V.F.W. Post 10950 fundraising event is pending but I can personally attest to the great time that is had by all who attend. So, please keep posted through GIG LINE and I’ll report it as final plans are made. In the meantime though, I do want to remind you that the next meeting of the V.F.W. will be on Monday, March 6th @ 7 PM – Colington Fire Department where you’ll find an elevator and ample parking.

Until next time, be happy, be safe and be proud. Be proud of yourselves for all you have done for all of us…we look up to you and we love you. If you know a veteran who needs help, please contact me @ cell: (252) 202-2058 or through editor@giglineheroes.com God bless you and stay tuned.

Contact the Editor

Marsha M. Brown has been writing a weekly Gig Line since 2012.  Marsha is the widow of Vietnam War, U.S. Army, veteran Billy Brown of Manteo, NC.  She was instrumental in establishing the Dare County Veterans Advisory Council and maintains an active role in the veteran community. You can reach Marsha with questions or suggestions at editor@giglineheroes.com.  Have a story to tell or a veteran to feature? She would love to hear from you!

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