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Friends ... and friends till the end.
We lost Jim about 2 months ago. Jim Garland, that is. The "we" is both his family and his huge crowd of friends. And me.
"Mr. G" was my next door neighbor since I moved up to Goodnight. He was my dove hunting buddy, my skeet shooting mentor (former New Mexico Skeet Shooting Champion), my steak eating (ribeye rare, please) dinner partner .
He was a gentleman to the ladies; knew how a Panhandle rancher, banker, peanut grower, cattle inspector dressed to impress.
He took me with him to the Pampa Gun Club to shoot skeet; to Outlaw's Supper Club to eat steak; to events big and small. And introduced me to so many good people... most all of whom I can also call friend.
Most importantly, he was just honest to the core. And, that is all he wanted in return.
Every time I'd get in a new vest or coat that he thought fit the image of the West Texas gentleman he was, he'd send pictures of him in it all over hell and gone (well, at least Facebook and Instagram). He bought a couple (after some tough negotiation as to price!!) He aways tried to get his friends .. and he had many .. in to buy it ... and a few times it worked. Think I could find one of those pictures to put in here? Nope! But did find some other great memories.
Jim passed just before all this April and May rain started . We had almost no rain for close to a year. Having spent his whole life up here, he knew so well the value and necessity of rain. One of his many great sayings was "Well, we are one day closer to rain".
I am convinced that after he got where he was going he hunted down the "person in charge" and wouldn't stop chewing on that heavenly ear until the "big guy" agreed to turn on the rain. This May was the 6th wettest May in the past 129 years in Goodnight!! That's how he lived. There was right and wrong ... and how he will be remembered.
Thanks, Jim ... for all you gave me in those 12 short years. (and thanks for the rain!)