This is in memory of Roger Hale
. Ralph met Roger at the San Antonio Reunion. They did not serve together in Vietnam, Ralph was a lifer and Roger was a draftee, their ages
were different- I could go on about the differences - never less they noticed each other at the reunion because of their rings. Lin, Roger's wife and I had each one of them a special ring designed. A Blackhorse ring. The telephone calls prior to the reunion made Lin and] close. However, that does not match or describe the following years of our relationship. Roger and Ralph have the bond of the Blackhorse, Lin and I have the bond of kindred sisters brought about by the fellowship of these Troopers.
Today I received a phone message from Lin. She said in a voice that made me know something was wrong and at the same time had a strength radiating though it.
"We have lost Roger. Please call me or I will call you when I have a moment of calmness. I love you guys". That was at 8:40 am
My throat got real tight, couldn't find a pen to write down her number. Took a deep breath, tears in my eyes, found something to write on and called her back. She wasn't home but a friend talked with me. That was 11 :30 am. Lin was out getting Kyle, their 12-year-old son, a haircut. Tonight is the first viewing. Friday May 30, 2003 Roger will be laid to rest. Afterwards, Lin is having a party for Roger, celebrating his life.
. Roger Hale died doing was I have always seen and knew him do. Helping another Vet. For what I was told Roger and Kyle had ridden the Harley to the Thunder Run in Washington, D.C. Memorial weekend. (Roger went just about every year). Lin was to meet them in Allendale, P .A. On Saturday a Thunder Run biker had some trouble with his bike. Roger helped push the bike it up a hill. Mission accomplished. In my mind's eye I can see Roger saying 'Hey man no problem', laugh and wave as his was walking away. As he was walking away, Roger grabbed his chest and went to Fiddler's Green.
I know Roger has three passions. And I do mean Passions. One was his family, Lin, his wife, Kyle and Katie, his children. Second, The Blackhorse men, third, his bike - of course a Harley.
Roger never was shy or hesitant to let folks know that he loved Lin and the kids. Roger was never hesitant to make a first timer at the Reunions feel welcome and at home.
Roger's passing has made me wept for him, all the ones in Fiddler's Green, the men not home yet, but Roger makes me smile knowing he lived his life to the last for his fellow troopers and his family.
I miss you and love you.