- 13 years old
- Date of birth: Jul 17, 1989
- Date of passing: Jan 11, 2003
Here is a special little something that was written and given to me, Jon's mother. I only saw Jon once but it was one of the experiences of my life I will never forget. The words on the back of the memorial for him seemed to apply to me. He only came into my life for about 30 min. one afternoon in 2001 but he left a footprint on my heart and yes, I was never, ever the same. As I was working in the house one beautiful spring day I heard a tractor coming up the driveway. I went to the door and saw a young boy and an old tractor. The striking similarity of the two was the first thing that cought my eye. The little old John Deere and the boy suited each other in every way. I watched as he swung himself easily down from his tractor and came up the sidewalk towards me through the rain that was beginning to fall. He stood before me then. Despite the small and slightness of his stature there was a certain "bigness" to him. There was confidence in the set of his shoulders, determination in the way he walked, his mouth had a humorous quirk to it and as he lifted his eyes to mine I saw courage, loyalty and love shining out of them. He asked me if we had a shed he could back the planter that was hooked on his tractor into so that the soybeans which were strapped onto it wouldn't get wet. "My little farm boy" (as I already called him in my head, for I had fallen in love with him at first sight) and I walked back to our pole shed where I showed him a space we had that might work. He eyed the height of the shed calculatingly, but then he decided to move the sacks of beans into the shed, as the rain started to fall heavily. The sacks were tightly secured to the planter with bungee cords and I remember watching as he tackled the job---his wiry arms and small hands working fast to accomplish the task. Setting to work to help him I soon found that getting those cords off was no easy task. We soon got them off though and began hauling the sacks in out of the rain. In my memory I can still see him hefting those heavy sacks into his arms and moving quickly to set it down again where it was dry as the rain streamed down his hair and into his eyes. As we got the last sack I sensed his feeling of accomplishment and I found that I was beginning to put my finger on what I found so intriquing in this farm boy. His strong little face spoke of his Dad's love for him and trust in him. His father gave him responsibility and this boy was going to do his best to the end for the love of his father and the joy of farming. He climbed back onto his tractor and started it as I began to walk thoughtfully back to the house. As he drove past he gave me a smile and a wave and I watched as "my little farm boy" drove back down the driveway sitting straight and tall on his tractor with the rain falling on him. I realized then that I didn't even know his name but I knew that I would never forget him. This was 2 years before Jon died. He will be missed by all who knew him well. His 4 brothers, father, mother, aunts, uncles, and cousins.
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