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Unformatted text preview: stext.com/abclit.html Talk was slow over lunch. They were subdued, preoccupied, and very confused. Esau at times felt the proper thing to do was for Sam to honor whatever commitment his country required. Miss Callie felt like she had already lost Sam once. The thought of losing him again was unbearable. That night I called Sam and gave him the bad news. He was in Toledo spending a few days with Max. We talked for over an hour, and I was relentless in my conviction that he had no business going to Vietnam. Fortunately, Max felt the same way. Over the course of the next week, I spent hours on the phone with Sam, Bobby, Al, Leon, Max, and Mario, as we shared our views about what Sam should do. Neither he nor any of his brothers believed the war was just, but Mario and Al felt strongly that it was wrong to break the law. I was by far the biggest dove in the bunch, with Bobby and Leon somewhere in the middle. Sam seemed to twist in the wind and change daily. It was a gut-wrenching decision, but as the days dragged on he appeared to spend more time talking to me. The fact that he had been on the run for two years helped immensely. After two weeks of soul-searching, Sam slipped into the underground and surfaced in Ontario. He called collect one night and asked me to tell his parents he was okay. Early the next morning, I drove to Lowtown and delivered the news to Esau and Miss Callie that their youngest son had just made the smartest decision of his life. To them, Canada seemed like a million miles away. Not nearly as far as Vietnam, I told them. Chapter Thirty The second contractor I hired to transform the Hocutt House was Mr. Lester Klump from out in Shady Grove. He had been highly recommended by Baggy, who, of course, knew exactly how to restore a mansion. Stan Atcavage at the bank also recommended Mr. Klump, and since Stan held the mortgage for $100,000 I listened to him. The first contractor had failed to show, and when I called after waiting for three days his phone had...
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- Spring '10