Monday morning we woke to a nightmare. I literally roused from sleep to the sound of siren, and the sight of six emergency vehicles from my bedroom window, looking down at our neighbor's house. Michael and I stood in shock, looking at the people running frantically around, in a chaotic jumble. We knew something terrible had happened to one of our neighbors, and we prayed.......
When the ambulance pulled away, I noticed it did not seem to be going fast. And then the troopers started showing up. It didn't look good at all. I urged Michael to run over there, and find out what was happening..and we found out that our neighbor and dear friend, Ron...was in that ambulance. He had gotten up early, eager to go ice fishing. He sat in his garage, drank a half cup of coffee, said good morning to his dog and his rabbits, and then had a massive and fatal heart attack.
We are incredibly sad. Its hard to explain what he meant to us, because words are not our friends in such times as these. And besides, words turn into tears. We loved him. He loved us. Life around here will never be the same. He was always buzzing around...we used to tease him because with his Sheltie, Buddy, at the front of his four wheeler we told him he was ever trying to teach that dog to drive. He spent his time between our house, his house, and our other neighbor's house. He did his rounds, we called it. We could count on a quick friendly visit just about daily, in one way or another.
We called him our Next-Door Noah......and for good reason. One day we saw some wood being hauled into his driveway. The next day, he had built the hull of a boat. Day after day we watched his master craftsmanship....as the most elegant and beautiful boat you ever saw emerged under his hands. We should have been in awe, but we were used to his magic with wood, and knew that anything he built would be amazing.
Like our rabbit cage. He started building it for us the day we brought our baby bunnies home. He was such a tender-heart. He even asked us about our rabbit's habits, where they liked to spend their time, etc.....so he could make the cage just perfect.
He was a close friend of Michael's too. Whenever he heard our plane landing he would race over to help put the plane away, then stay in the hangar, hanging out and talking about airplanes with him. They hung out there a lot together.
I could always count on Ron when Michael was gone for work, to help me with anything and everything. I could never list all the ways he saved the day for me! He knew what I needed before I even knew, and I felt safe with this big tough ex-cop, ex-bounty hunter, ex-prison guard around. We were in good hands!
I am so sad. I just find it hard to wrap my mind around the fact that he is really gone. My heart pounds hard when I look across our lawn at his house, and try to face it. My feet stumble when I try to walk the short distance to their house from ours. I ache for his wife, and her sudden and shocking loss. He was 64. And strong and healthy, we thought.
Goodbye our dear Next-Door Noah. We will miss you more than words can say.