COUNTRY ROADS

Published October 8, 2017 by rochellewisoff

This week Pegman returns to the Western Hemisphere to take us on a tour of Littleton, West Virginia. Although I missed the challenge last week, a story formed pretty quickly for this one. I’m a day late and see that this group is growing. Nice to see. Thanks to Karen and Josh for hosting. I so appreciate the two of you on more than one level. 😉

To enjoy this week’s stories or to submit your own, visit the inLinkz button:

Genre: Realistic Fiction

Word Count: 150

This story is dedicated to the forgotten veterans, the women who unassumingly served as nurses and ‘Donut Dollies.’

COUNTRY ROADS

“My dearest Jimmy,

Remember 1971?  We came home from Vietnam that year—the same year John Denver’s song became a hit. I think he must’ve written it with you in mind.  

‘Littleton,’ you laughed, your eyes shining like the stars over the Shenandoah River. ‘It’s just a Podunk town in the middle of nowhere.’

Nonetheless, to you it was home…’almost heaven’.”

Sharon set aside her pen and paper. Picking up Jimmy’s guitar, she strummed the melody and sang, “…West Virginia, Blue Ridge Mountain…” She closed her eyes. “Life is old there, older than the trees, younger than the mountains…”

A gentle breeze riffled her hair. “You promised to bring me here after the war. And so you have.”

She folded the note, tucked it inside the guitar and propped it against his headstone. Forever she would carry his face and hear his last words, “Nurse, please don’t let me die.”

*

*

*

In this image provided by the U.S. Army, the 2nd Brigade was faced with a new problem at their Bien Hoa, Vietnam base: from Fort Rilay to Vietnam come the 93rd Evacuation Hospital complete with nurses on Dec. 19, 1965. The problem of getting a private shower for the girls fell to Company B 1st Engineer Battalion. In the interests of the health, welfare and cleanliness of the nurses, the men of Company B decided to give up their own air-conditioned shower. The dressing area of the shower was boarded up and the entrance-way closed off. An appropriate “Off Limits” sign was made and posted. (AP Photo/U.S. Army)

37 comments on “COUNTRY ROADS

    • Dear Josh,

      Sad to say, I’ll have to catch up on the Ken Burns Documentary when it comes out on DVD. I was a teenager during the Vietnam era. So much changed in this country during that time.
      At any rate, I’m glad you liked me story. Those nurses really are the forgotten vets. They went above and beyond the call with quiet dedication. Thank you.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

      • You’re welcome Rochelle. By coincidence tonight the BBC showed a documentary, filmed in Huntington, WV, about the heroin epidemic affecting that state and others (a topic focused on in some of the other Pegman stories).Sadly real life has much more capacity to induce sadness than fiction does, even when the writing’s as good as yours. I’d never thought heroin misuse, particularly intravenous, was a major issue in the US, as I’d believed other drugs were the ones that were widely misused. So, I’ve learned something (that I was probably happier not knowing).

        Like

  • Sending a million likes for this one, Rochelle. Such a loving tribute to all the nurses who risk their lives to tend to the wounded in battle and who have rarely if ever been acknowledged for their service. Thank you! Kudos! Shalom~ Jelli

    Liked by 1 person

  • Very sad, Rochelle. I’m from Ohio and I’ve been through a part of West Virginia. When my Dad drove Mom and me there for a short trip some of the lovely valleys were full of smog. They’ve cleared up since the Clean Air standards were put into effect but may smog up again under the Trump Administration. I was in college from 1963 until 1967 and sometimes wonder how many of the young men in ROTC didn’t make it back alive. Good writing as always. —- Suzanne

    Liked by 1 person

  • My sister and I volunteered at the Veterans Hospital in Fayetteville when we were in high school – through the Red Cross. I remember one boy (who was really cute) that had a cast on his leg. He got to go home thank God. Great story Rochelle – tear jerker!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Nan,

      That says a lot for you and your sister. Not many teens would volunteer at the Veteran’s Hospital, particularly in the days when it was clearly uncool. Thank you for your comment and for sharing your experience.

      Shalom,

      Rochelle

      Like

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