Friday, April 22, 2011

Fire, Family, & Friends...

My mom had this uncanny ability to predict when my dad was going to be home.  It did not matter what time he would arrive – she always had dinner ready at that time.  She also has that sixth sense about people – she has often told me that I would be on her mind – and she just knew she needed to say an extra prayer.  Many times the events in my life weren’t huge – but afterwards if mom and I talked about it – I was always so thankful that she listened to God when he put me on her heart. 
In my case – that cannot be genetic (see my first post) – but I definitely have somewhat that same ability.  Last Saturday – April 16th – Kerry went to work, Kevin was in continuing education in Wichita Falls, LynDee had to go to Fort Worth and I was in Graham at home.  The fires were burning on the Graham side of the lake (Westside) and on the eastside (ours).  At 1pm I started begging Son two to ride out to the lake with  me – he of course being the typical teenager did not want to go anywhere with mom – but I called Kerry.  I asked Kerry if he would take me to look at the fires (okay my nature is to “chase ambulances” – I am sorry not a great quality to have – but it’s me…) – Kerry said he would be glad to and so Son two and I loaded up.
We get to the lake – and the fire picture below greets us (1st picture).  The sheriff was on site telling us to evacuate….
The rest of that story is somewhat easy to follow:
Saturday - we evacuated, moved all our trucks, got the computers & important papers, timesheets, work orders, and watched the area of the shop until 9pm.
Sunday – Kerry & Kevin went to the shop (see the 2nd picture…Look for Kerry’s black truck in the middle of the photo - his truck is parked in front of our shop), stayed there and monitored the fire behind our shop, LynDee and I went to the lake but could not get to the guys – the roads were already blocked, talked to Butch (more on that in a minute), and all of us left the lake (along with everyone else on FM 2353).
This fire disaster has brought to our lives the incredible service that so many give.  The news reports give unbelievable numbers of people that are in our area helping to save homes, businesses and keep people safe.  For us – it was our chance once more to be around Butch.
Since the 1970s – Major Butch Shoop of the Texas Parks & Wildlife Game Warden Division has been coming to PK Lake and protecting our water and roadways – typically during holiday weekends.  My boys and our extended family would anxiously wait for when Uncle Butch would get to the lake – the visits were short but we looked forward to them just the same. As our boys got older he came to at least one football game each year – even though his schedule was always so busy.  And he was on the text recipient list when he was unable to be at the game.  He has been right there with us.
My husband’s family has known Butch since the early days of PK Lake when he was a game warden in Palo Pinto County.  He is one of my father in law’s dearest friends.   To know Butch is a joy and his stories are the best!  One favorite part of ours is when he would come to our house at the lake and turn the sirens and lights on – I know my boys loved it – but so did I!
The 3rd picture is of Butch’s truck at our home.  Like so many others – Butch left his family in Sanger and came to PK Lake to be a part of the most incredible emergency response team that we have ever witnessed.  We were able to offer Butch a place to sleep for a couple of nights and once again got to sit around our table and listen to stories.
If you know Butch you will understand that I will be in so much trouble.  He would never want any attention given to him.  What he does – is just that – what he does.  He doesn’t want recognition – he comes to PK Lake – or Lake Whitney – or Lake Texoma – or wherever he needs to be because of just that – it is where he is needed.
But for this Groves Family – having Butch at PK Lake just allowed us to rest a little easier – we are forever thankful for his service to our state.

Always, May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all. 2 Corinthians 13:14.

1 comment:

  1. This past week it was not only grace 4 greta, it was grace 4 groves! You are right, Butch is our silent angel circling in the night protecting us all, he has always been there to serve and protect and I feel better when he is here, knowing he will take charge and protect us all! I'm just not sure how he gets his wings inside his vehicle!!

    Thank you Cheryl for listening to that sixth sense of knowing when you are needed and where. You were able to handle the crisis situation at hand and get the things out we would need to conduct business if the unimaginable did happen, Praise the Lord it did not. But today I'm praising Him for you!