HCG April 17 2008
My friend, my companion, my loyal dog Tag has died. I found her Thursday morning two weeks ago, in the side yard, under my bedroom windows. Tag came into our lives in 1998.
Her last day was one of our ordinary days, we spent most of it in the yard working…her and my other two dogs, Harley and Charlie followed me from place to place. On after while Harley and Charlie lost interest in yard work and went and waited at the back door for luncheon to be served. But Tag, never left me, even when I was mowing she laid down at the top of the hill… where she could watch me and never loose sight of me. In fact I named her Tag because, she tagged along where ever I went, Tag would not get in the car of her own free will….but she learned where she might find me and she would be waiting on me at church, city hall etc. She followed me then would lie on top of my car and patiently wait for my return, then follow behind the car back home.
The day before she died, we had our lunch which included her favorite treat Vienna sausages…Tag never was selfish about the snacks, unlike Harley and Charlie; she didn’t mind waiting her turn. When she was a young dog, Tag even brought a litter of stray puppies and their mother to eat her food, she never ate until they had finished.
Tag actually did not belong to me, not when she and I first became friends… Tag lead a double life….she would come when she saw me in the yard….and stay all day. But come evening, John and I from the front porch, would watch her take a catawampus course across Luster Street, between that old shop building and the carwash and disappear.
Tag was well cared for, she was clean and was never hungry….in our heart of hearts we knew she must belong to somebody, but we were in denial. Then that Christmas when she came to our house with a brand new pink collar, we were crushed, we could no longer even hope to make her ours….We enjoyed her when she was with us and missed her when she was gone.
Fast forward to that next summer when they came to film, on our Main Street, the movie, “Oh, Brother” The town was full of stray dogs…Well, the sheriffs department came to rounded them up…They didn’t get all of dogs, I know because, Emily took a photograph the day of the filming, capturing me surrounded by several stray dogs.
But they did get Tag….That’s when I found out where and with who she spent the time away from us. Because her first family went to Raymond, paid her fine, and was bringing her back to Edwards when I spotted her in his back seat of James Williams’s car. I squealed, “Tag” …James stopped the car with a big smile said “So it’s your house she goes to.” Right then and there, James gave Tag to me…Wasn’t that a most generous gift? And he told me if the sheriffs department came and got her again he would go back and get her for me.
James Williams is Ms. Willie V. Crump’s son, at the time Ms Crump was on the Edwards town board of alderman, after many years of service to this community Ms Crump retired and James is now on the board. Ms Crump lives on Utica Street just one street over from here and at the time James ran a café on Utica Street, catawampus across Luster Street between the old shop building and the car wash.
I had always heard that if a dog belonged to a black family it would not like white people and if a dog belonged to a white family the dog would not like black people. Well Tag proved that theory wrong….Tag didn’t care…. Tag loved, and was loved by her two families, one black and one white.
A man from the church, Robert Edward Wilkerson, helped me wrap Tag in a lovely blanket and we buried her at the edge of the woods…The digging was easy because of the rains…but saying goodbye to my friend has been hard.
Through tears I say….
Love to all and
Call if you need me