There is such a thing as a statute of limitations on certain crimes. When enough time has passed by, you can no longer be convicted of that particular infraction. But there is no statute of limitations on gratitude. As long as the person who needs to be appreciated is still alive and well, they can still be thanked.
My father died rather suddenly when I was 15 years old. Such an event has a way of putting a teenager’s life in an instant emotional tailspin. Neighbors and friends are gracious. They bring in food and ask to be called if anything is needed. And we appreciated all they did. But there was one gentleman who went the extra mile.
Duriug the 1970’s Tom was the lead salesman at the Case Farm and Industrial Equipment dealership where my dad served as general manager. He was proficient in that role. He had a strong clientele base to which he sold backhoes, bulldozers, excavators, and forklifts. But on the weekends, Tom took a 15 year old kid to play golf periodically. I am thankful to say that I was that kid. Business interests took Tom to other cities, and I soon became an adult with my own life. It has probably been 32 years since we played golf together.
Thanks to facebook I was able to connect with Tom’s son today. His son shared his dad’s email address with me. After over 3 decades, I finally sent an email and expressed my heartfelt gratitude. I think I may need to take a trip out West to see my friend Tom. It seems only fitting that lunch needs to be on me.
If you need to say thank you to someone, don’t wait 30 years. Many of the employees that worked for my dad during that time period are deceased now. I am just grateful that there is not a statute of limitations on gratitude. And I am equally thankful that Tom is still around to thank.