Thursday, December 11, 2008

Charlie Brown

Of all the Charlie Browns, my dad was NOT the Charlie Browniest.

I've blogged about my Dad here before, but yesterday was yet another day to remember him. It was his birthday - the first since he passed away from a brutal fight with cancer. My mom received this email from his dear friend Dave Franz (one of my favorite people from living in Germany) and I was so glad to receive a copy of it.

Greetings to Cathy, and to all of you....
I received this truly awesome email from Cathy Brown. I was born at Ft Myer, VA, just outside of Arlington National Cemetery. I first met Charlie Brown around October 1979, and then met Cathy very shortly thereafter. I had transferred from Korea to Germany, where my Army wife was stationed. I was a Lieutenant and Charlie was the Captain (my boss). He and I became close friends then, and maintained that friendship over all these years. Kristi (sp?), Kelli, and Natalie.... I knew all three of you in Germany. I never had the pleasure to meet Colin, though I always heard about you from Charlie (especially when he and I worked at AK Steel) and your Mom. I am writing this because I want you to know what Charlie meant to me. If you were his friend, he would do anything for you. Just suffice it to say that you did not want to be on his Bad List.... Charlie was funny and happy! He was also serious and no-nonsense! He was my mentor. I learned so much from him.... his leadership style is one of the best examples... he truly cared about his subordinates and took care of them. If you worked for Charlie, you kind of felt there was a protective shield around you, as he would be there to defend you if you were in the right. And he was still beside you if you had slipped up. He never turned his back on you either way. Charlie was a people-person. He knew how to inspire and lead. I know I met some officers during my 20 years in the Army who had some influence on me... but, Charlie was the one who stood out. He was not intimidated. He voiced his opinion if he felt it was the correct one. He could be trusted and he was definitely respected. And he took care of his troops. That is what I learned from Charlie Brown. Cathy already knows all of this. Charlie and I loved each other as only soldiers can. And we told each other that. We were prepared to die on the battlefield together, side by side. That was the respect and love that this soldier and I had for each other. Charlie Brown was a soldier. And a beautiful person. My Mother (deceased) met him in Germany, and she never forgot him and his kindness. My youngest sister still knows his name when I mention it. He lives on. I miss my dear friend. Charlie Brown was probably my very best friend....

David Franz

Thanks Dave. This will be cherished. We miss him everyday.

1 comment:

TEAM TOAST said...

Happy Birthday to Charlie! I know that he is dearly missed! Love you-Lori