Monday, November 1, 2010
Mr. Robert Prigmore, A True American Hero
Tonight my wife and I went to a local funeral home to visit some family friends who lost a loved one. The lost loved one was not just any man. He was a true American hero.
We got to know Mr. Robert Prigmore, his wife Anna, his daughter and son-in law, grandchildren and their families through a church small group. Mr. Prigmore did not accompany his wife to the group at the outset, but came later, and I am so thankful he did.
Mr. Prigmore was by all accounts “a character”. He was outspoken about his beliefs and had many stories to tell from a long full life. I especially enjoyed listening to stories about his many years as the head of the records department at the Mansfield Reformatory.
Mr. Prigmore was a devoted family man. Every Tuesday evening of the year it was dinner at the Prigmores. He took pride in being the chef to feed a household of descendants.
I was especially interested in the fact that the obituary said that Mr. Prigmore was to be buried with full military honors, and that he won the Purple Heart for being wounded serving in the Army during World War II. Anna said that he also won the Bronze Star for bravery in carrying a wounded soldier to safety.
My feet were hurting, so I asked Mr. Prigmore’s grandson Jeremy if I could take a seat beside him. He told me a story that almost brought tears to my eyes. He proudly spoke of his grandfather’s exploits in the Battle of the Bulge, where 19,000 soldiers died. Mr. Prigmore was severely wounded and lay in the battlefield for three days surrounded by dead comrades. At night German soldiers scoured the area for wounded allied soldiers. Their goal was to bayonet living ones to death.
Jeremy said that his grandfather camouflaged himself from the Germans by pulling over himself anything he could reach nearby, even dead bodies. He identified Germans in the area by their speech. He passed out several times and finally woke up one time to hear men using English. The allied forces finally invaded the area to rescue survivors.
Mr. Prigmore survived some major innovative surgeries of the day. Jeremy and his wife commented that if Mr. Prigmore had not lived they would not even exist. I am very thankful for his survival, and I'm proud to have known Mr. Prigmore…and his family.
“Join with me in suffering , like a good soldier of Christ Jesus.” II Timothy 2:3 (NIV)
See you next time,