This piece originally appeared on Robot Butt here: Let’s Make This Go Viral: A Man With Dementia Writes a Touching Letter to His Family
As I sit here on my sofa near the end of a life that was full and good, reflecting, I can’t help but think of the twists and turns I have taken throughout the years. I served in the Korean War, married my high school sweetheart and the love of my life, raised my family, and was a successful bread salesman for over forty years.
I remember the first store I ever approached in the bread business. It was a small-town Piggly Wiggly, and the manager’s name was Buddy Hendricks, but everyone called him “Lucky” because of a fumble he recovered and returned for a touchdown in the state semifinal game in high school. You see, he was a backup on special teams, but Homer Wilkins caught a stomach virus before the game which meant Buddy took his spot. He hadn’t played all year. That touchdown won the game.
Anyway, after this long, fruitful life, I recently found out I have dementia – an accelerated form, and I have a few things I’d like to say.
To my wife Debbie, I love you, and I always will. You are my rock and the love of my life, and, no matter what happens, you always have a special place in my heart. Dottie, you mean more to me than life itself, and you are my rock and the love of my life, and, no matter what happens, you will always have a special place in my heart.
To my sons Jake and that little one. You have grown into fine young men, and I want you to know that one of you is not my real son. Jake, I know you are an impostor trying to take my family’s money and that you will not stop until the drug cartel you’re working for has everything I worked my whole life for. Well, Bonnie and the little son will never let you take it. YOU HEAR ME?!?! You just need to leave and never come back! Little son, keep impostor Jake away from your mother. He’s dangerous.
Also, Jake, I think those kids of yours may be actual demons.
Did I ever tell you about the time I flew Elvis Presley from Memphis to Las Vegas just so he could punch Don Rickles in the mouth? Apparently Rickles called him an ugly name, and the King didn’t like it. It happened. He tipped me $100 and a TCB gold chain with the year engraved on the back – 1972.
I remember when I was a kid my parents would always scold me for my grades. In seventh grade, I brought home a C in Literature, and my father, John David Thompson, Sr., made me go outside and till the whole garden myself – all the way until dark. He was tough, but it made me a better person. I will never forget that.
While I’m thinking about it, my daughter, Penny, is stealing from me. She took my wedding band! My wife Connie saved for months to get me that ring, and now Penny stole it. That’s okay though – I know the truth about her husband. But she shouldn’t take my things!
It’s about to rain, and no one will put the mules up in the barn. I guess I have to do everything.
Before I finish, I would be remiss if I didn’t say something to my wife, Delores. You mean more to me than life itself, and you are my rock and the love of my life, and, no matter what happens, you will always have a special place in my heart.
Now please leave me alone before I crash this plane and kill us all.
Peace and love and peace,
John David Thompson, Sr.