September is always a sad month. My Grampa Sam died on the third of September 1971 and my daddy died on the 20th of September 1986. Even if I hadn’t had the date of my Grampa’s death emblazoned on my brain, the song Papa Was a Rolling Stone would have branded it there forever: “It was the third of September / a day I’ll always remember / because that was the day the my daddy died...”
There isn’t a song about September 20, but I don’t need the help. I remember it in exquisite detail. My bride of nine months and I had been out walking around Stillwater, Oklahoma. It was a warm, late summer day. We had come inside and were watching Murder, She Wrote. I have Angela Lansbury flashing through my head as I write this.
The phone rang, it was my momma, I heard immediately she was upset, and this worried me.
Daddy had been diagnosed with esophageal cancer 10 months before.
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