MARC C GORHAM ((( PART 2 )))

Discussion in 'Vietnam Memories Forums - A Place For All Vets Fro' started by cpt-t, Jan 9, 2016.

  1. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Supporting Member

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    Greetings Ken...just finished a big standing rib roast supper...grandson Bryan come by..he's 'batching' now
    and a lot of PB&J's on his menu...his wife and kids went back to Iowa for the duration and time does weigh heavy
    for him...his job is an EMT dealing with homeless, crazies, and druggies...Ken, I mailed the box to you this morning and the post office lady said 5 days...be sure to let me know when it arrives you posit..
    USPS TRACKING NUMBER I: (9534 6136 0310 6060 3675 77)
    BEST REGARDS, Chief
     
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  2. cpt-t

    cpt-t Member

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    CHIEF: You didn't have to do this. You have done enough for me all ready. I will let You know went the box gets here. Thanks Again.
    ken
     

  3. SkeeterDope

    SkeeterDope Well-Known Member

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  4. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Supporting Member

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    KEN...WHEN YOU SEE WHAT I HAVE MADE YOU, YOU WILL HAVE TO SAY...
    "no matter how I hack it, this will be 'one of a kind' always"!
    I was going to attach that which I speak about, but put it there temporarily so you can choose or not,
    where you want to have it displayed....best regards...Chief
     
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  5. cpt-t

    cpt-t Member

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    JOHN: I just got home and found the package You sent me. I really don`t know what to say, except Thank You, Thank You so very much. The Angle You made for me is just beautiful and the miniature of MARC`s Grave Stone is truly a work of Art to me. As You can see, I just don`t have the words to Thank You properly. But I will Treasure both of these items for the rest of my life. And both of them will be displayed in a place of Honor in my home. My Wife and Son want to Thank You also, for Your wonderful gifts. Your unexpected gift has made me very happy, Thank You. Stay in touch JOHN, and I will try to do the same.
    TAKE CARE MY FRIEND:
    ken
     
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  6. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Supporting Member

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    It truly pleases me Ken that you and your family likes the John's Angel and the special, "one-of-a-kind' gesture
    that would apply only to you for Marc...the quarter on the grave marker...no one, including myself, had ever heard
    of that...I was going to attach it to the base of the angel figure, but decided to let you determine where you may want it displayed....the story accompanying John's Angel about my son John...I retired from my engineer job the last mid-watch of 1995 to help John's Mother care for terminally ill John.. AIDS is a horrible disease...John was in the movies, TV, and a male model for major clothing chains such as SEARS and JC Penny...his life style claimed
    his life...shortly before he died he told me that the fame which he sought and never achieved with awards and recognition, perhaps I could do something in his memory...The hundreds and hundreds of John's Angels I have made and given in Johnny's memory far exceeded any fame he achieved in his work...I state to anyone that those
    John's Angels will probably be passed along, such as you Ken, leaving it for your son...It saved me for I felt so distraught and anguished,thought of 'eating-a-gun' many times! Ken, don't feel 'duty-bound' in any manner of "trying to stay in touch".....the expressions of your appreciation 'fills the bill' for me...If ever your travels bring you to, or near, Glendale Arizona the welcome mat is extended...we live directly to the north of I-10 off 59th Avenue about 4 miles. Sincerely John Wilborn
     
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  7. cpt-t

    cpt-t Member

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    JOHN: Sorry but I have been out of touch for the last few days. I have been extremely busy from Thursday thru Sunday this week . The Gun Club I belong to has two Guns Shows a year one in the Spring and one in the Fall. And these are the two biggest Guns Shows in the State of Kansas. And last weekend was our Spring Gun Show. It takes most all of the Club Members to make it happen. But these two Gun Shows are our Gun Clubs, Cash Cow and we really depend on it`s revenue , to bring funds in to pay for the cost of running a Gun Club, to paying for the many improvements, we make each year. Our Clubs, Gun Show did very well Sat & Sun so we are very happy with our efforts. But I am really tried and have slept most of the day, today. I am just turning into a Big Old Wuzz. JOHN, again I just don`t have the words for a proper Thank You, for all You have done for me. I will take the Angle and Miniature of MARC`S Grave Stone to my VA with me to my weekly appointment`s on both Tue and Wed of this week. I want to show them to the guys in my Group, my Shrink and a few Others. For If You can`t tell I am extremely proud of the very special gift, You gave to me.
    TAKE CARE MY FRIEND:
    ken
     
  8. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Supporting Member

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    Ken, those words of praise does this old heart good...Son John would have been so pleased knowing that his angel brought so much joy to others like yourself...Had he ever been presented an award such as the Oscar most of his kind covets and work towards, I'm sure he would not be more pleased than hearing your kind words...I must share a story with you all when he worked for the PING inventor, Karsten Solhiem ...he wanted to do something to please the old man for he had been so good to him when he was ill. Glad in Glendale.

    .
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2016
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  9. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Supporting Member

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    SOMETHING SPECIAL FOR MY FRIEND (Part 1)
    In the beginning, the project that came to have so much joy and meaning attached to it was not anymore than
    a statement or a wish. Upon completion, that project would come to be one of almost spiritual significance---it
    would involve myself, both of my sons, an old man I had never met, and I think that it also involved God,
    though I had never met him either.
    During the mid-80’s, I had begun to work with wood from a small work shop in my back yard. Toys and
    childrens rocking chairs, some very rustic and Shaker style furniture, lots of basic-basic book shelves---well you
    understand, nothing real ‘Ethan Allen’ looking.
    Sometime in l994 my son Tim procurred a goodly amount of American black walnut wood for me to work
    with---beautiful wood, black walnut. He had found it out in the west valley so he purchased the entire offering
    and brought it home for me to supplement the pine and the plywood I was used to working with. The wood
    had been laying around for such a long time that it was thoroughly cured and aged as wood should be---that is so
    it does’nt warp or bend---in fact it had been around so long, the seller gave Tim this one old beat-up peice just to
    get rid of it. Well let me tell you that this one old hunk of wood was to contain inside all the grace and beauty
    that the finest Louis XIV furniture ever made, would never possess. The old board or I should say ancient old
    plank, as it was that thick and wide, looked like a peice of driftwood, all mud covered and split badly. The
    discarded and rejected old plank laid outside under the apricot tree while I used the prime wood for pen bases
    and letter holders and jewel boxes---things of awe and magnificance flowed from my humble workshop---things
    to be coveted and praised by the recipients....The river mud on the old plank was washed off by the spring rains
    as it lay there, unused, in the stiffling Arizona sun.
    This day my son John stopped by for a short visit---I had made him a microwave oven cabinet which I helped
    him load onto his truck to take to his apartment over in Phoenix. John had worked the early morning shift at
    the Moon Valley Country Club, so the heat of that early afternoon was oppressing and depressing for both of us.
    A while later as John and I sat at the kitchen table drinking a glass of iced tea, we visited for a few minutes.
    John was energetic and bouncy, though he had been loosing a lot of wieght. I teased him that he better start
    eating as it would’nt speak well of the healthy fare they served at the morning grill--truth in advertising thing you
    know.
    Suddenly the mood got serious as John declared to me rather spontaneously ‘Dad’ he said ‘you know Mr.
    Solheim, my Boss at the Club, Karsten Solheim, the man who owns PING golf clubs and all that stuff?’ It had
    been such a change in mood and conversation that it cought me by surprise but I told John that I’d read of Mr.
    Solheim in the newspaper, and added rather lightly, that every time I saw the old fellows picture that it reminded
    me of Colonel Sanders of Kentucky Fried Chicken fame.
    He agreed with a troubled smile and the seriousness continued in the statement that was to follow. ‘Dad, you
    know I’ve been over there for a couple years now---at the Club--and you know Mr. Solheim owns that and so
    much more---hell Dad,’ John continued forcefully “the man is a millionaire many times over, and when him and
    Mrs. Solheim comes in for lunch of just to visit, they always ask for me to come over---sure Dad to serve
    them---that’s my job’ John declared matter-of-factly ‘but if the place is’nt busy, they invite me to sit with them
    and we visit and laugh--I just love those old folks’.

    As John spoke, a distant look appeared in his eyes and then he continued ‘I want to do something for the old
    man, Dad---don’t know what ----- he can have anything he wants, anything money can buy, but I’d just like to
    give him something, a kind of ‘one-of-a-kind-thing’-----you know what I mean , Dad’ John mused, now looking
    right into my face? ‘One of a kind’, John repeated.
    It was almost a hurtful look that I saw on John’s handsome features---a thin looking face now, compared to
    the robust, movie-star looks of a few months back. Eyes as clear and bright as an eagles---- but eyes that were
    troubled---questing---wanting to be understood. Like he was picking my mind--touching my heart.
    ‘Dad’, the oldest of my two sons stated emphatically ’what I’d like to have you do for me, for Mr. Solheim
    that is, and not ever for anyone else , is to make him something so different that it can never be made for anyone
    else’! I was quite litterly taken aback by my son John’s declaration of intent. That could be quite a large task,
    after all it would come to pass later in the decade that they could ‘clone’ almost anything that they put their mind
    to. We sat silently for a few moments, looking into each others faces, and even into each other souls...
    ‘Well dad, I gotta go-- got a dozen things do do and errands to run’, as John bounced to his feet,
    energetically, as John had a tendancy to do---full of nervous energy--that was what the experts would call it. As
    I followed John out to his truck, I admired the tan he always seemed to have---- like George Hamilton’s tan I
    used to tease him. ‘Damn John, how can you go without socks’, I continued to ‘prod’ him, as he climbed into the
    little truck cab, turned and winked at me, accompanied with that Pepsodent smile --- ‘See you Dad’, he chirrped
    happily and sped off down Sunnyslope Lane.
    Some would call it unbridled passion, others would say it is dogged determination, but for me to have that
    kind of a challenge thrown out---well, I can tell you I got to get on top of it----- ‘like a duck on a June-bug’!
    Almost as if it were a pre-disposed plan,I went immediately behind my workshop and to the old plank of
    walnut---like it was waiting for the Master’s Hand. No, not at all-- never would I call myself master of anything,
    let alone my labors with the woodworking... Intuition, obsession, spiritual guidance---call it what you will for as
    soon as I had that decrepit old plank of wood in my hands, I almost shouted ‘this is it---this will give John what
    he wants for Mr. Solheim’.
    The split and age tattered end to the old plank had to be removed so I sawed off that peice----as the split was
    sawn, the two peices separated and there between the chunks were fossilized walnuts---ages before when the tree
    was growing, it had been split with a bolt of lightning and it had continued to live and grow. The walnuts
    growing on the upper branches had fallen into the crevice of the tree and there they had remained for all this
    time---as trees grow so slowly, maybe staying there for centuries. The growing tree and the tree bark had grown
    around the walnuts and there for all that time had made implanted impressions that could never be duplicated or
    copied by man or his machines---how true now the words from Joyce Kilmer’s poem ‘and only God can make a
    tree’.
    So soon following my son John’s declaration that he wanted something special for Mr. Solheim, that there
    was the raw material for the effort. Where the fresh saw marks were on the wood, though rough in texture, was
    the brilliant, chocolate brown color of

    the American black walnut---like another blessing for the rough beauty already showing, there had been a
    wood-knot---briarwood and knurled looking like a cake when chocolate is stirred into vanilla batter---the
    swoops and swirls, looking that way only once-----.
    I could barely contain my excitment as I rushed into the house to show the boys Mother----I could tell she was
    excited too for she muttered softly ‘that’s nice’, and went back to her sewing Raggedy Dolls.
    I cannot say that in the days or weeks to follow that a thing of unparrelled beauty and magnificance
    evolved---no, I will not say that, for in the matter of hours, I had fashioned this inantimate bit of wood, that, for
    all purposes, been thrown away, into a true ‘one-of-a-kind’ offering that son John wanted me to craft for him. A
    gift from a stranger to my son Tim, and now a gift fashioned for my son John to give to his friend, Mr. Solheim.
    Even working with the woods all the time like I did, I was at a loss to describe it’s beauty. The cake batter
    looking colors blended with the knots and knurls of the black walnut, which was actually a brown, but just as
    breathtaking. I had buffed and polished the wood to a high luster---it could be compared to the sheen and quality
    of rich Corrinithian leather....a masterpeice that it seemed I could not claim as being of my own doing---as if it
    had the Master’s Hand involved.
     
  10. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Supporting Member

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    SOMETHING SPECIAL FOR MY FRIEND (Part 2)
    Though it existed now as a thing of rare beauty, it must be something functional---it could not become a
    paperwieght or a nut cracker---it must be more useful than that so again, as if someone else was making the
    decisions for me, I knew that it must become a declaration unto itself---to give permission, to lend authority, to
    wield power, to grant wishes, to be a ‘one-of-a-kind’ gift.
    Mr. Solheim, at the helm of a major corporation, did all these things in his work, so I decided that words be
    an insturment or extension of the mans endevours and his success. Words some old Pilgrim had uttered years
    before when he declared ‘THE PEN IS MIGHTIER THAN THE SWORD’, sealed my decision for John’s gift.
    A very beautiful and golden Shaffer’s pen accentuated the wooden base---but not finished still. I called my
    friend Bud Corbin who does incomparable engraving work and ordered the plaque for Mr. Solheim’s gift. Bud
    had it ready that same day for me.
    John was so very pleased when I called and told him that I had Mr. Solheim’s gift finished----he was so
    anxious and forcefully demanded to know what it was, but I would’nt tell him. I did suggest he stop by at a
    Hallmark store and use the new technology of doing your own greeting cards, you know in your own words and
    phrases. John agreeed but he still was demanding as I hung the phone up.
    It would be late the next day before John would come by---he’d been playing racquet ball and though he was
    tanned, his face appeared rosey and flushed---like when he was a little boy.
    I did not have a box for the gift, though John’s Mother had left out some white box lining paper before she
    went to work. Mr. Solheim’s gift was sitting on the kitchen table on top of the snow-white paper.
    It still brings a tug to the heart and a tear to the eye to recall the events of the day. A gasp from John as he
    dropped the paper bag from Hallmark that he was carrying, and wide eyed, tenderly picked up the gift. I don’t
    think John could have been more pleased---I know I had all the pleasure I could survive, as the silence
    prevailed...
    Words did’nt seen necessary or even fitting, even if they could have been formed and uttered. So very
    spiritual......
    ‘He’ll sure like that Dad’, John quaked, sounding all choked up; ‘and the brass engraving Dad, is just what I
    would have said’.
    The engraving on the pen base read TO MY FRIEND KARSTEN SOLHEIM FROM JOHN WILBORN
    with a line underneath that read, ‘ONE OF A KIND’.
    John opened the Hallmark bag and removed a flower adorned greeting card and handed it to me. I opened
    the card front and read
    TO MY FRIEND KARSTEN SOLHEIM FROM JOHN WILBORN and on the next line were the
    words ‘ONE OF A KIND’.

    LATER FOOTNOTES: When this story was written Johnny knew he had AIDS. Over the remaining months of
    his life he stayed active and enjoyed life to the fullest. In September 1995 he treated his Mother and I to a
    vacation in Cancun, Mexico. He bought himself a Jeep Wrangler in April 1996 and drove one final time to the
    state he was born and loved so dearly, California. He no longer worked but visited with Mr. and Mrs. Soliem
    often in their Paradise Valley home. In July 1996 Johnny succumbed to the ravages of that horrible disease.
    Shortly before Christmas 1999 I went for a haircut. John Lewis who has been my barber for almost 20 years
    told me he goes out to Mr. Solheim’s home and cuts the old fellows hair. John said he was in poor health and
    very senile. Everytime I see the PING logo and hear the advertising I think of the grand old man---he has left a
    legacy for us all in the sporting goods he invented and developed. Additionally I think of how kind he was to my
    son John. Life goes on----.
    Early spring 2000 Mr. Solheim passed away. One of the photos the Arizona Republic showed was of Mr. and
    Mrs. Solheim having breakfast at the Moon Valley Country Club and I pondered if it may have been Johnny who had served them that day. 23 February 2003 John H. Wilborn
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2016
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  11. cpt-t

    cpt-t Member

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    JOHN: That was a great, and very special personnel story. Thanks for letting me read it. IMHO You are a very special Story Teller. I can tell You miss Your Son so very much. All you have to do is just read the way You phrase your words. When You are talking about Your SON JOHN. I truly wish I had the words to make your pain on this go away, or at least lessen some what. But as you can see I just don`t. I have no dought what so ever, that You and Your Wife will see your Son again. Under much happier circumstance than when You last saw Him And He will be the healthy and vibrant Son, You and Your Wife raised with so much loving care. I truly believe that The Man Upstairs, takes the Good Ones First. It has to be true, for I have witnessed it first hand so many times. And always questioned that, for it was not right in the way, I thought things should be. Saints and Sinners, and it always seemed that the Sinners seemed to stick around a lot longer. And most of the time the Sinners walked away clean, without hardly even a scratch. No justice in that. But who am I to make that call on what is right and what is wrong. Hold Your other Son as close as you can, and feel no guilt. For Your Son John is watching and that will make Him very happy.
    TAKE CARE MY FRIEND:
    ken
     
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  12. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Supporting Member

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    Ken.....you did yourself proud as you explained some of the 'mysteries of life' about yourself...I read your remarks
    a number of times and sought out many that seemed to reflect my own convictions...it was not too long ago when
    it seemed rather appropriate at that posting to comment on words recalled from an old movie/TV show...a few words from the old movie script titled Jeremiah Johnson...perhaps that gifted screen writer used those words as a self-testament on his own life...maybe he'd seen the elephant...walked the dog...paid the fare....
    Guessing in Glendale. John

    Bear Claw Chris Lapp:
    You've come far pilgrim.

    Jeremiah Johnson:
    Feels like far.

    Bear Claw Chris Lapp:
    Were it worth the trouble?

    Jeremiah Johnson:
    What trouble?
     
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  13. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Supporting Member

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    Good Morning from Arizona, Ken...how are you doing? Yesterday was our first recorded, triple digit
    temperature recorded at Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport...that location makes the temp official. Summer is
    indeed, waiting in the wings...Yes, I have wondered since our last visit on here...WHAT'S HAPPENING...
    Plodding along in my day-to-day, wood-shop activities...currently I am making a prayer bench for one
    of the wife's, church friends...It is 'one-of-a-kind' of my own design...the lady is such a benefactor to the
    other church members...generous beyond belief in both actions and designs as her church calling is
    Employment Counselor...it is 100% red-oak construction with a maroon velvet colored knee pad covering
    a 3 inch sponge cushion...soon that pool water will warm enough that I can rid myself of the bothersome
    wood dust on sweaty skin..in and out the pool like a performing walrus!!! Don't change my britches after
    every dip and 'diaper-rash' on 82 year hide is something ugly to behold and bear up to!!! Chief
     
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  14. cpt-t

    cpt-t Member

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    JOHN: It has been a while. I have been out of touch for for several weeks. As I think I have told You my Wife`s health is failing. And a couple of weeks ago She fell again. And broke Her right leg in three places. Her Doctor said she could not put any weight on Her right leg for a minion of 6 to 8 weeks. And because of Her age and health problems it could be much longer. Her Doctor says He still may have to operate on Her leg and put a steel rod in it. He also told me that my Wife might not ever walk again on Her right leg. So all I have been doing, has been to take Her to the different Doctors offices so they can take a look at Her. And caring for Her at home, because She is bed rest now. I got a bed side commode and that is a real life saver, for both of us. We had some Home Health Care Nurses start coming to our house and they were going to come several times a week. But after a week of this. All the Nurses said She needed more care than we could give Her at home. So my Wife is now at a Rehabilitation Hospital , and will be for several weeks. I know it is for Her own good that She went there. But I feel like I have let Her down, that I can`t take care of Her at home, where She really wants to be. So now I am either getting ready to go to the Hospital to check on Her or just coming back with Her clothes to get washed and taken back to Her. Thank goodness the Rehab Hospital is fairly close to our home and all the people there are really nice. It seem like I am just running in circles most of the time. And to be real honest, I really don`t know what to do. Except do what the Doctors and Nurses tell me to do. It just seems like I am on the out side of the circle just looking in, like an observer. I never even thought about having problems like we do now, and it is very scarey. ((( Getting Old Sucks ))). Oh I have shone the Angle You made me to several people and all of them have been very impressed. I am very proud of it, and the Miniature Grave Stone Marker Thank You for making them for me. I look at them several times a day.
    TAKE CARE MY FRIEND:
    ken
     
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  15. rooter

    rooter *VMBB Senior Chief Of Staff* Supporting Member

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    Good Morning, Ken....Certainly it seems that life's trials and tribulations have been stacked onto you and your
    wife....I've mentioned times that my wife is a fervent Mormon...I have heard her declare many times that one
    will not be given more than they can bear...I've retorted back to her, "by whose standards"! I'm pleased that
    you got back for I had pondered more than a few times how things were going for you...Currently, my own wife
    is doctoring kidney and liver problems.. Just Friday I went with her the Kidney clinic ...the specialist MD had
    reviewed some of her other medical prescriptions and deleted them for they were aggravating the kidney
    problems...coming very close to having to be on that machine that filters the blood... Mary is a breast cancer
    survivor....she jokingly remarks to friends when they inquire of her health the she has "husbanditis...the John
    style one". Ken, I truly am trying to make this note light and cheerful for you...I think I can declare that I
    know to a degree the anxiety and worry you are going thru... Ken, I don't even go to church but I do pray in
    in my own time and space....I shall pray for your continued strength and for your wife's health and welfare as
    you encounter aging and infirmity...Chief
     
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Vietnam Memories Forums - A Place For All Vets Fro MARC C GORHAM ((( PART ONE ))) Jan 8, 2016