David R. “Poppa” Alexander

RICKEY’S LETTER

Monica,

You are one lucky person. Children old and young touch my heart. This time in your family history will live forever.

One of my fondest memories of coming home from Vietnam was when I saw my younger brother (he was 14) in his bedroom by himself doing something. I walked in and said “what you doing brother?”

He replied, “Getting rid of some things that I don’t need anymore,”

When I looked, in a box was the few letters I had written to him from Vietnam, and a stack of Newspaper clippings about Vietnam (not about me, just about Vietnam). There was a large map of Vietnam and on it was a red circle for each place that he found or thought he’d found, where I was or had been at the time. In the bottom of the box was a letter he had written to me and not mailed, I started to open it and he said don’t read that. I was a little taken aback but did as he ask and didn’t.

Later in the day I went down to where we burned trash (we lived in the country and did that sort of thing) and the box was still there and had not yet been burned. I guess I shouldn’t have but I opened it and read the letter. It was addressed to me and dated the first week of my being in country.

“Brother I hope I never have a chance to read this aloud because if I do it will mean that you will have been killed and I’ll be reading this at your funeral. My fondest memories of my growing up were when you and I played and worked together. I never told you I love you and now it’s too late. I have kept up with you by letters, newspapers, and TV, but it really wasn’t enough. I just want you to know I love you brother and I’m proud of you.

Love
Rickey”

So keep the memories: they will come in handy a lot more than you realize.

God Bless,
Poppa