by Rob Tier
(Flagler Beach, FL USA)
I remember eight years ago as if it were yesterday when we walked into the Volusia County Humane Society to look at dogs only, not take one home. Well, you guessed it, we thought wrong. We met Hershey. She was about two at the time and it was love at first sight.
Looking at and petting this gorgeous chocolate lab, my two kids came up with the Hershey. It must have already been her name because she loved it from the start.
We couldn't take her home the first day, but when we came back to take her home, we knew then, when we gazed into Hershey's eyes, that this was our guardian angel who we began to learn was also human.
Hershey has been through our family's good and bad times, ups and downs.
Now, to you, Hershey, you and I have had many long talks together. As I kneel beside you for the last time, I look into your precious eyes and I can hear you say these words of wisdom...
Rob, Bets, Caleb & Faith, I want you to know that it is ok. You've made a decision due to the fact that you have seen me grow frail and weak as you see the pain in my eyes. This is one battle that may seem to have been a loss, but not true. For you see, I know you're all sad to see me pass, but don't let this grief stay in the forefront. Let it go into the ground and grow a tree full of wealth of precious memories that we shared, the good and the bad.
More than ever, your love must stand the test. We have had so many happy years. I get this more than you. You didn't want to see me suffer, and made the sacrifice so that I might run free and live with the Father above, my and your creator.
I know you have heard that a dog stays with its masters till the end, but it was you that stood with me. You held me firm as your tears rolled down your face, until my eyes closed one last time.
I know in time, you will agree, today was a gift of love, a kindness that allowed my tail to wave once more here on earth, to wave cancer-free in heaven.
For you see, from pain and suffering I have been saved. I will run for you, climb for you as I sit with the Father above, protecting you as I keep watch, in His unconditional love.
Tears roll down my face and onto the keys as I say goodbye, my sweet Hershey, yet, someday, I'll see you again.
Your Daddy, Mommy, Bubba & Sis, Rob, Bets, Caleb & Faith