My father’s only brother was killed in an automobile accident in 1974. He had been working as a truck driver for a company near Washington, DC, hauling gravel, asphalt, etc.
The circumstances surrounding his death were somewhat mysterious, and left a lot of unanswered questions in the minds of his parents, my father, and the rest of the family. Needless to say, all these unanswered questions made the quiet acceptance of his passing even harder for my father.
Kenneth (my uncle) had died early in July. Later that year, in the early fall, my father and mother sat watching television one lazy Sunday afternoon. They were watching a football game. My brothers and I were all out of the house, pursuing our various interests, so Mom and Dad were the only witnesses to what occurred next.
As they sat watching the game, the camera was following the action on the field. Just as a player was completing a pass, a figure appeared on the left side of the screen. It was my uncle!! His image was superimposed upon the play field–as if he had walked directly in front of the camera, which was trained on the players in the field below. He was visible upon the screen from the thighs upward. As he casually walked across the screen, hands in the pockets of his slacks, he turned his head to look directly into the camera. It was if he were making direct eye contact with my parents as he crossed the screen. He proceeded across the screen, and exited from view on the right side of the screen.
He was dressed in his typical attire, dress slacks, white dress shirt, with the sleeves rolled to the elbows. His expression had been serious, and intent, as though trying to convey some message.
My mother, in shock, asked my father, “Did you see that?!”
In response, my father stated, too emphatically, it seemed, “I didn’t see a da** thing!!”
My father was not the type of man to admit to being shaken, nor to express freely any strong emotion. But my mother, who knew him too well, knew that he was lying. He had definitely seen his dead brother make an appearance on the television screen. He refused to even discuss it, however, and, my mother knew better than to press the matter.
Why did Kenneth appear? Perhaps it was his way of letting my father know that there is something more to life, even after death, and to assure him that things were really all right. We will never know, at least on this side.
© Paulette Boyd