I have two brothers – David is my older brother and Joel is my younger brother. David is 5 years older than I and Joel is 5 years younger. Dad and Mom planned their parenthood well based on their financial well being. They bought new cars every five years too! Hmmmm...
This story though is going to focus on my big brother. David was obviously the first born and as a first born he said he had it the hardest breaking in Dad and Mom to parenthood. Dad and Mom agree – David MADE it hard... but that is another story. Dad was a big guy and David definitely has more of his genes as he is 6’1” and about 300 pounds. Me – I got more of Mom’s genes as I am 5’9” and 185. It was fun when we were much younger as with my smaller frame I was much faster than David and could out-run him easily. This speed was absolutely necessary and sometimes required for long distances when fighting with him. The bad part is when David finally caught me he used that much bigger frame with his retribution. I still love him even after all of that.
David has the “respect in people” attitude along with an incredible focus on family and values… and the same intense desire to be in the woods hunting or just the outdoors. If you would ever meet David he would shake your hand strongly while looking you directly in the eye. And while talking to you David would not take his eyes off of you as he really wants to hear what you have to say. So with all of these attributes he is a great big brother.
I have a great closeness to my big brother as David also on his own took on the responsibility one year of taking over for Dad in continuing my hunting education and experience. See one early year of mine being involved in hunting was potentially interrupted when Dad had 2 tons of sheet steel fall upon him at work. He had one leg broken in 5 places and the other one in 3 places. With Dad in a cast from waist to the ends of both feet he was not able to go hunting that year.
It came hunting season that year and David owned his own vehicle. He was 18, had a steady girlfriend, going to college part time, and was working a full time job. He really didn’t have time for a 13 year old younger brother. But that year for hunting season he made time for me.
I remember that crisp November Saturday morning clearly. Nothing was said previously about taking me hunting. Dave worked Friday evenings until 1am or later so I had no idea he was going hunting the following morning. I awoke to Sadie (our beagle) whining and barking in excitement – her normal response when she knew she was going rabbit hunting. At about the moment I realized what was going on David came into my bedroom and said “c’mon you need to get dressed for hunting and get your gun”. I leapt out of that bed and joined him in hunting that day. I was able to get one rabbit while David shot three. It was that day that I knew my big brother was the greatest.
Every time now that I see David I shake his hand and look him directly in the eye... and then give him a big (manly-type) hug.