The Trunk

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Over the years, I reminded Dad of a  pact we  had made that  whoever died first  was to contact  the other.  On December  23,  1983, my brother Jack  called from Oklahoma to tell me  Dad had died, We had blizzards at home and in Oklahoma,  so I did  not go to the funeral.

That night,  I was  playing  cards  with some friends of  mine,  Esther  and Lou,  when my cordless phone dialed itself.  Esther  and Lou were frightened, but I  said Dad was  letting   me know  that he  could hear  and see.  ( He  had been blind  for  twenty years and had recently lost his  hearing.)

The next morning the phone dialed itself twice, before   two other witnesses. They said it was a malfunction or that someone was using my wavelength  to place long-distance calls . I reported  this  to the phone company, but no additional calls had been made.

Because of the weather, Dad’s funeral my phone rang frantically. Somehow, I sensed Dad was shouting to me; “Get the money out of the trunk. It is  in plastic in my brown suit.”

I called Jack and he told me that the Salvation Army was to  pick up the trunk as soon as  the weather cleared. I told  Jack about Dad’s message. There was dead silence. Awestruck, he said, “My God, I forgot all about that.”

When he  could talk coherently, he explained that  when  Dad went into the  rest home at age ninety, he was  upset  because he had only a little money each month, so  Jack gave him seventy-five dollars.

Jack said he  watched   Dad  wrap the money in plastic and put it in the inside pocket of  his suit and lock it in the trunk. He took the money from the trunk. My phone never dialed itself again.

Gertrude Houck

Longmont, Colorado

September 1994

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