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Sir, you are a good man. You showed true integrity all the way through and it was great that you were able to give them a child that they could both love as their own. Not too many men would turn down a beautiful blonde that comes to you with such an offer.I got a call today from Iowa, from the Mother of my first born child. She wanted to let me know that he passed away last week, at the age of 48. He died too young,from Aplastic Anemia, a disease commonly associated with farmers and long term exposure to pesticides.
Please do not post condolences, because that is not why I am posting this here. I am posting this because I don't know who else to talk to tonight and I have a lot of mixed, bittersweet emotions tonight, and I need to tell this story.
I am not mourning his loss, because I never knew him. I can't talk to my kids about it, because they never knew about him. He has been a secret I have held inside me for almost 50 years!
No one in my family ever knew about him. I never told my wife or kids about him, it was just my secret. I kept it a secret, because of a promise I made to his mother and her husband before he was born.
You see, I was a surrogate Father.....just a sperm donor, if you will......
The story starts in 1970. I was in the Army, and had volunteered to go back to Vietnam because I was stationed at Fort Riley Kansas. I know some of you are wondering...why would I volunteer to go back to Vietnam? but if you ever served at Fort Riley, you would understand!
So, the Army gave me 30 days leave before I had to report to Fort Lewis. My intention was to hitchhike back to South Bend Indiana to see my folks, but I got sidetracked on Interstate 80 in Iowa.
I was standing in my uniform on an on ramp early in the morning, and this Chevy Van pulled up driven by this beautiful young blonde. She had a smile as bright as the golden corn stalks that surrounded us for miles. It was rare for a gal that beautiful to pick up a hitchhiker, and I was surprised she picked me up....but she was very different. She was dressed in a flannel shirt, jeans and cowboy boots, and she had a couple of shotguns in front of the passenger seat as I opened the door to the van. She grabbed the guns and put them in back behind the seats and said with a smile...."Don't worry about these, I've been out hunting this morning, Do you like Pheasant?"
I told her I had never tasted Pheasant. We got to talking, and she asked me how far I was going.
I told her I was headed to Indiana, and that I had a 30 day leave. Then she asked me if I wanted to go to her place..."You have to try my Pheasant dinner! You got 30 days . right?"
Now, all I am thinking is this is to good to be true.....a beautiful blonde picks me up and askes me to come home with her and wants to make me dinner? Of course, I said yes!
After about 50 miles, we turn off the Interstate and head north through farm country. She is asking me a lot of questions......was I married or single?.....did I have a girlfriend?......things a guy usually asks the girls he meets. I thought she was "picking me up"...….
We get to a small farm, and I ask her if this is her place. She tells me it is her and her husbands farm.
"I want you to meet my husband, he got back from Vietnam 2 years ago. He got wounded in Vietnam, and he doesn't get out much anymore. He doesn't have any friends in town, and I am hoping you guy's could be friends. He needs some cheering up!"
(I know this thread is long.....but I have to tell this story....I have kept it inside me for too long!)
Her husband Bill, was wounded during Tet of 68. He was a Marine, and was in a wheelchair, having lost both legs.
He was pretty standoff-ish at first, but when we got to talk, and I told him I was also in Vietnam during Tet of 68, we became friends...and realized I was "a brother in arms."
This was my first time really dealing with someone who came back that was wounded that bad, and the guilt I felt was overwhelming....because I was still healthy, and he was confined to a wheelchair.
We had a great time, he and I drinking beers, as his beautiful wife cooked us Roast Pheasant for dinner.
I actually forgot about his beautiful wife.....until she came into the bedroom late at night and wanted to make love to me......but I couldn't do it. All I could think about was how I was betraying her husband. Our bond was more than she could understand...….I just couldn't have sex with her.
The next morning, at breakfast, everything was a bit strained.
She left to go to town, and he told me he wanted to talk to me...….
He told me how much she wanted to have a child, and how he couldn't help with that. He actually told me that I was the first one that she found that he approved of.
So I stayed there, and I did what I could to help them...…….and I promised that I would never come back or interfere with what might happen...…..
Nine months later, I got a letter in Vietnam with a picture of their beautiful boy, and a request that I remember my promise to never contact them.....
So I held my promise...……………...