Where have all my friends gone? Gone to graveyards everyone. When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn? I lost three best friends in the last 38 years after arriving in Southern Alberta.
My first friend was Bob Hagel, he used to say, “see you on the first” the first chance you get. After moving to Coaldale from Taber we used to travel back to Taber every weekend just to visit with Bob and his family. This is what you call dedication. He used to preach to me of the three days of darkness. He said, “we must turn to the Lord and believe in His Word.” One day someone asked us to accommodate a homeless woman arriving from B.C. We were reluctant to take her in, but Bob was willing to take her into his home.
My other friend was Len Tope. Before he became a Catholic at St. Ambrose Church he practiced several protestant faiths and could not fit in. One day on the way to Mass he encountered a vision of our Blessed Virgin Mary while he was praying the Rosary. Sweat poured down his forehead and he said he felt in ecstasy since, then he decided to take RCIA lessons in Catholicism.
Len was very educated and many people called him the walking encyclopedia when he spoke for almost an hour at a Knights of Columbus meetings. The topics he chose was about church history that brought him back two to three thousand years ago. No one dare interrupt or ask him questions. He used to publish articles in the Knights Newsletter “The Proof is in the Pudding.” Len and Inge are missed because every Saturday evening and Sunday after Mass we used to meet for a meal.
Finally, our third friend was Albert Bleile; we remember him when he was a Contractor and built several homes beside his own in Coaldale. He poured cement in our other driveway and it still stands solid today after 30 years.
We used to invite Albert and his mother to our home for Christmas, birthday celebrations and other occasions. He enjoyed beef carving at various restaurants and LSCO. During his funeral we found out that Albert was a guitarist and used to play for Dance Bands with his brothers in his younger years, at Trampling Lake, SK.
Had we known this the Choirs in our church could have asked him to play in the choir. Albert was a quiet man but we managed to communicate with him. Ray Sander, helped him with his yard work that made Albert grateful. Lydia and I visited Albert when he was in a coma, prayed for him, when his brothers were not able to come to be with him.
Are you Ready? Luke 12:40 “Two people will be working in the field, and one will be taken.”
Rest in Peace, my buddies.