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April 07, 2006

There we were, in Charlie's Den...

CW4 Mike Novosel

Politicians wax eloquent of the dead. Clergy offer condolence and hope. The talking head reads what is put in front him. Friends and family reminisce in fond remembrance and the pain of loss.

In the end, for the warrior, it's what his brothers-in-arms say that echoes across the chasm crossed by the Rainbow Bridge, down the road to the rollicking laughter that spills out from Fiddler's Green...

Today I hear the laughter.

Comes now a comrade of Mike Novosel, Warrior Angel.

I remember Mike Novosel so well. I was at the 3rd Surg when he was flying in wounded to us with the 82nd Dustoff. He was old enough to be a father to most of us there... in fact his son, Mike Jr., was also flying with the 82nd at the same time.

Come an evening if we weren't working we would sit around the table at Charlie's Den, the O-club at the 3rd Surg and tell "there I was" tales. Some evenings Mike Sr. and the CO of the 82nd would also be over there and they would stand against the wall at the end of the club and watch the younguns. We used to tease Mike Jr. mercilessly and tell him his Dad made us feel like we were at the senior prom and he was the chaperone.

But Mike Sr. never treated us like kids. He treated us like comrades in arms, with a ready smile, a soft word, and a kind manner.

I guess I'll see him at Fiddler's Green again one of these days.

-Carol T. Kirk, MAJ Ret-
RVN 5/1969-12/1970

Yes, it's the laughter *I* hear.

Fare thee well, Mike. Keep 'em cold and keep 'em coming! And give Whiskey a pet and tell him I miss him, eh?

Chivvy up to the Bar of Argghhh! Carol. The 'ritamatic is humming, the beer is always cold, and the well is deep.

What with our own coterie of Viet Vet Helivators, this is as good a place for a wake as any. This *is* an Irish Castle, after all, and whatever his heritage, Mike is Irish today.

*Irish Tenor*

"It's whisky in the mornin', whisky in the night
Another Irish Soldier-lad has fought his final fight
We'll toast him till we're drunk Boys, and dowse the candle light
Tell them Mike Sr. is coming home tonight."

*/Irish Tenor*