Lyle Gamble was one of a kind.
Tough: Chief of police, World War II vet.
He had been declining for some time and finally it was the end.
So we gathered in a church in Seward, Nebraska, to remember and learn.
We did both..very well.
Together we sang "The Old Rugged Cross."
And a group of men - the Kitones-Lyle.the founder -all in their 70's and 80's sang together..."Amazing Grace," and "God Will Take Care of You."
I'll always remember scanning their faces over and over as their aged voices filled the air with truth and wonder. The leader waved hands before them hands with fingers now very mishapen by age.
One of the men sang much of the last piece - "God Will Take Care of You" - looking full at Lyle's widow as if to write it forever on her heart.
He wrote it too on mine.
Grandaughters sang, "Where the Roses Never Fade."
And we thought a lot about the quick passage ot time and the enduring future - heaven.
And he was given full military burial..in falling snow, people packed in to witness the event. 21 gun salute. Flag moved from draping the casket to folded with precision for endurance.
And we drove back home the next day, through blizzard and cold...arriving by evening and grateful indeed to be home.
And thinking a lot more with clarity about "home."
Thanks, Lyle, for the lessons you have taught us all.