Everett Lee's Story
Let me tell you the story of Everett Lee.* Everett Lee was a good friend of my father. I really don't remember a time growing up in the Church that he wasn't around.
He was a truck driver by trade, driving a gasoline tanker for the local chapter of one of the major oil companies. He owned an old GMC pickup, which he kept in immaculate condition. He had a Harley-Davidson motorcycle as well, which he also kept in pristine condition. He lived with his mother 'til the day he died roughly ten years ago. She has since passed away.
As I said, he was a good friend of my dad and a good friend of the family as well. He never missed a Sabbath service that I know of. He seemed a decent and honest man. I always enjoyed listening to his stories, seeing him and Dad cuttin' up. They enjoyed their visits together. We would, without fail, see him and his mother at Sabbath services there in town, and at the Holy Days in Midland or Lubbock. Often they went to Tucson for the feast, as did our family. We enjoyed many dinners, visits, etc. with them.
His mother was very sweet and kind, she always offered us cookies when we went over to their house. I remember at least one occasion when they brought out a toy box. We adopted her, I guess, as another grandmother. She never had a cross word that I know of. She had her parakeet and small dog to keep her company when her son was away on the road.
She had emphysema, even though she never smoked. I suppose her late husband had been a smoker, and the second-hand smoke had gotten to her. Sometimes I stop and think of some of the old-timers that just aren't around anymore, and I sorely miss them.
As I stated before, Everett Lee, or Mr. ---- as we always addressed him growing up, was a truck driver. He drove a gasoline tanker for many years. I hear tell that he rode with a motorcycle "club" before he settled, got a haircut and a real job. It has been known for years, that being around certain petroleum products can be dangerous in the short and long run, due to naturally occurring carcinogens. It comes with the territory. I believe that was his way of thinking. And he probably knew long before anyone else that he was sick. I can only speculate that he could have sought treatment and walked this earth a bit longer; after all, I don't think he was much older than my dad at the time. I guess this was a demonstration of his faith. It also seems to me that it is also yet another example of how flawed healing doctrines can be deadly, but…"whosoever will save his life shall lose it" (Luke 9:24), and "he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved" (Matt 24:13). I supposed that he endured to the end of his own life.
I am a firm believer in the axiom that God helps those who help themselves. You can't be too specific in prayer sometimes, and you can't be too general. It reminds me of the old joke about the man who was caught in the flood, and refused a ride with the boat, the canoe, and finally, the helicopter, but was going to wait for the Lord to save him, then gets up into heaven, where God told him that he had sent the canoe, the boat and the helicopter. If He had intended us to not see physicians and such, why did He invent them in the first place? That's like refusing to go to the store to buy food, but instead waiting for manna to fall from heaven.
I was in town before he died. I saw him reduced to almost nothing. But he was a trooper. He made sure things were taken care of and his mother provided for to the best of his abilities. I received news that he had died. I wanted to attend the funeral, and pay my last respects. I was in Lubbock at the time, and I wanted a ride to Hobbs, so I called on my so-called brethren for a ride. These were people that my family had known for many years. Same last name, but no relation. I always thought that they were friends of the family, to the point that I could call on them, since they were going anyway. In the usual, kind, giving spirit that defined some of our "brethren in Christ," he decided that it was a little too far out of the way to give me a lift. I have yet to pay my last respects.
I won't speak ill of the dead. It is clear that Everett's faith was strong, if misguided. I just can't help but think what should have been.
By Aaron (child survivor of WCG)
February 20, 2004
Poems/Free Verse & Comfort in Music (comfort for the broken hearted; no audio)