I was talking to my sister on the phone the other day and we had been talking about when our brother Paul died. I was horrified when I heard the news years ago and have since somehow blocked out the month that he died. One thing that I began to notice was that I always liked to take long drives to a town near me called Burgettstown at a certain time of the year. I would somehow ‘feel’ something. Burgettstown is a very small town, about 4 blocks long. If you blink while driving through you will miss it. The people there, well at the time that I lived there with Paul, were very kind and sweet and treated me and Paul with favor. He and I worked at a place called Robinson’s Fruit Farm, picking apples out of trees and throwing them either at each other or putting them in large, green army-like bags on our backs. I was skinnier then because apples were my breakfast, lunch and dinner.
When my brother lived, he was loved by everyone. He was a different kind of guy. He was the type to go to the store for an elderly woman or wash someone’s aching feet. No, he wasn’t mentally challenged in any way, he was just that nice to people. He had a major problem though that finally got to him and he couldn’t take it anymore. He was a diabetic drinker. Paul loved beer and pool. He and I used to challenge others to a game of pool and we won nearly every time. We would say, “Come on somebody! Challenge the Scotts to a pool game! You can’t beat the Scott’s!” People hesitatingly came to play because they knew that they would lose. It was funny and sometimes disruptive when someone would be drunk and get mad at us for winning, calling us cheaters. Paul and I would have to defend ourselves. Guess you could tell that I wasn’t saved and sanctified all of my life huh? Shocking? Hope not. I cannot stand when some Christians act as though they were born with a silver bible in their mouths. Haha. Anywhooo….
No matter where Paul would go, people would treat him nice. They gave him an unusual respect. I noticed that just about everyone gave him whatever they could in his times of need. People treated me nice because of him. I don’t like the way that some tried to take advantage of him but it was a very few who tried. I took up for him like a body guard. You know you always have to have that minority who thinks that they are better than someone. When they would call him names that I didn’t like, I’d shut down the entire place wherever we were at the time. It got to the point that those who didn’t respect him respected me. We fit together like a hand in a glove. I learned how to live and love the unlovely and what some would call the undesirable. Paul just seemed to favor those that others would reject. We would sit in his basement apartment singing with some of the most unwanted, unloved people of the town. I think it runs in my family a bit. We favor the underdog. Well, some of us anyway. I’ve always been that way too, I can’t stand to see someone being teased for no reason. In Ps 35:19 David says that people hated him without a cause. David became a great king. It is also mentioned in John 15:25 as well. The people that we hung with turned out to be some of the best people that I’ve ever met. I felt love when I was around them and could trust them as well. We’d sing old Motown oldies and it sounded good! Paul would cook one big steak and fry about 5 potatoes and we’d all eat and be filled. Paul walked in love. A friend of his allowed him to live in an old home that they had and didn’t take care of. It was all run down with rats in it and grass grew up everywhere. Paul called me one day and said, “Sis. come look what I did with the house.” I went there and it looked like a castle! He cleaned that house up and cut the grass. It looked like the Army Corps of Engineers had been there! He showed me his nice new plates and how he cleaned up the kitchen, etc. Only he could do that. Paul was a genius!
My brother had Type 1 Diabetes, the kind that required daily needle-shots. I kept telling him to please stop drinking so much beer. A friend of mine began to date him and she kept telling him to please stop. He said that he liked beer and he wasn’t going to change. He just wouldn’t stop. He wasn’t a nasty drinker either. He’d just drink and play pool, laugh, listen to music and go home. He began getting sicker and sicker. He would drink until he would fall asleep. I’d clean up behind him and take him home. I began to feel strange about his drinking. Something just wasn’t right. He wasn’t taking care of himself the way that he used to.
Folks alcohol and diabetes just don’t mix. If you are drinking heavily while taking diabetic meds, please stop? My brother kept telling me, “Sis, I can’t stand living like this anymore. They’re gonna find me in a coma in a basement somewhere you watch!” I begged him to stop talking like that. He was getting tired. Have you ever gotten so tired sometimes that you just don’t think that you can make it anymore? That is what happened to Paul. He said that he was tired of injections twice a day and dope addicts stealing his needles from him. To you addicts that kept stealing my brother’s needles…God will get justice and you will be rewarded for your sins. My brother got tired of getting turned down at the drug store for trying to get more needles because you all were stealing them from him. You could be the cause of his death. God will reveal it all someday.
He and his twin (my sister) were just alike. Their personalities were extremely likable. If you saw then on a Sunday, they had the same personality that they had that past Monday. His twin still lives and is doing very well. I love her. She’s different from the world.
One day I got the call that I didn’t want to hear. The voice on the other end of the phone said, “They found Paul unconscious in a basement in Burgettstown.” I thought to myself, “Unconscious. Maybe they can save him!” My family and I went to visit him in the Medical Center that they had him in. He was hooked up to pipes, etc just to breathe. They wanted to make the decision to take him off of the breathing machine. I didn’t want to really. Everytime that I walked into the room, his machine would start beeping faster. I knew that he knew that I was there. He could feel me there. We just had a special something. He was my brother and my friend. What do you do when your brother and best friend dies?
I reluctantly agreed to remove the breathing apparatus. He died about a day or two later. It was terrible for me. I can only imagine how his twin felt. We went to the funeral and watched a storefront church’s preacher do his funeral. People from all over town was there. Some say that he died of heartbreak because he finally found someone to love him and they married but his wife died about a year before he did. He rolled over in bed and she was cold when he kissed her. They say that he died of heartbreak. I think that he did too. Kathy was a wonderful wife for him. They fit together as a better hand in glove. She was just the right one for him. I think about the times that he and I would go to Washington Cemetery to visit our mother’s grave. We talked about things that I could never talk about with anyone else. Paul was very humble and understood. Kathy was buried there too. We would pack a picnic basket or go to KFC and sit under a tree across from our moms grave and we’d eat and talk about good and fun things in our lives. Paul loved me. He loved me at my worst and my best. He saw things through my eyes that no one else had ever seen. He was a very humble man. I know he will make it to Heaven. I can see him washing the feet of Jesus right now. If he washed the feet of men, he’s love to wash the feet of our Savior. He loved the Lord and told everyone so. He went to church more than I did then.
Every year, when the weather gets a little bit crisper and the school buses begin to run, I think of Paul. He died in September. I always loved September for some reason. It’s a month that isn’t scorching and abusing to people, yet it still isn’t freezing to the point of being uncomfortable. It’s like the April of Autumn. My brother and friend died in my favorite month. He died honorable and very much-loved. Paul, I miss you. I haven’t been the same since you died. You were my listening ear. I’ve learned to give it to Jesus and He listens to me, just like you did. He is coming soon. I know that you will be there. I can’t wait to see you rise up out of your grave and be caught up with Him to go to Paradise. We’ll sit under a tree and talk about old times and laugh again. You left me too soon.
I knew there was something different about September. That’s why I love it.