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One day, back in the 60’s, I was halfway listening to the radio while doing other things, when something made me stop what I was doing and give my full attention to the radio. It was a song, but it wasn’t a song. It was a magnetic voice with stirring music in the background. The words. The message. The voice. It was something that touched my heart. It touched my soul. I didn’t want it to stop. I had never heard anything quite like it before. Then it was gone. I wanted it to come back. I wanted to hear more.
In the following weeks and months, I was fortunate enough to hear it again and again. Each time I heard it, I had to stop what I was doing and give it my complete attention.
Over the years, life happens, and those memories were pushed to the background. Not long ago, someone was expressing regrets over things lost and they mentioned they had given away some record albums they wished they had kept. No longer having anything to play them on, they were persuaded to give the records away. The ones they really wished they had kept were Elvis’ first gospel album and one called “Day For Decision.” I sat there for a moment and my brain was trying to figure out why “Day For Decision” was ringing a bell, but the memory wouldn’t quite surface. My heart remembered before my brain did but finally those wonderful memories came flooding back. It was like finding a long lost friend.
Over the next few days, those memories kept haunting me. I wondered what ever happened to Johnny. Wanting to know, but afraid to find out, I did an internet search. I found the web page his daughter had created for him and I found the letter he wrote thanking her.
It was so comforting to find that he was still alive and what he had been doing with his life. I loved the way he walked away from the music business. I loved the way he lived the life he really wanted. I loved the fierce way he protected his right to have his last name spelled the way it should be, rather than the way someone else thought it would be more attractive to the public. I loved the fact that he did the things he wanted to do, cowboy, locomotive engineer, crop duster. I loved the fact that a lot of people he was around daily didn’t even know the “famous” Johnny.
I even went on Amazon to see if his “Day For Decision” vinyl album was available anywhere and I was fortunate enough to find one. When it arrived, it was like finding a lost treasure. When I played it, my heart remembered. The feelings from fifty years ago were fresh.
Wanting to know more about this person, this man, I looked on facebook and found him listed there. Many people of importance can just be “liked” and “followed” on facebook without having to grant access to those following, but he was set up just like any other private person. I sent a friend request but decided after a few days that he probably didn’t accept requests from people he did not know, so I removed the request. But, I was able to see his posts and I would look to see if there were new posts each time I went on facebook. I was grateful to see his views of what is going on in our country agreed with mine, and my respect for him grew. I loved his open hearted share about his little dog that died recently. I was so impressed with the picture of his mother that he posted on Mother’s Day.
The more I saw, the more I wanted to get a chance to visit with this man about the unfortunate value changes in our country during our lifetime. I was determined to send another facebook friend request and not give up this time.
I had not been on facebook for a few days but did take a look on May 17th and saw the post by his daughter, Fawn, from the previous day. My whole being just shouted out “NO! It can’t be. I won’t accept it.”
My regret is that I never got to know this incredible person. He was an uncommon “common man.” He was a patriot in every sense of the word. A patriot not only defends his country when needed, but he lives a life of independence and hard work.
While trying to reconcile the loss, I thought of so many people I have lost to the next world who died in slow, painful ways they would never have chosen for themselves. From his own words in his letter on his website, I know he loved to fly. Pondering that information, I had a vision of my favorite scene in the movie, “Secondhand Lions.”
Johnny Seay. Yes, he really lived.
HOWDY SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS PRAYER FOR HIM AND FAMILY
I was converting some of my 45's and Day For Decision and Mary Rocks Him to Sleep had their turn. Day for Decision with just a few word changes could have been written for today and Mary Rocks Him To Sleep always touched my heart. Thank you very much for both of these songs.
are you able to do parties love your music
How about writing a new ' contemporary' version of Day of Decision? Same melody perhaps with wordage reflecting the mess this great country faces today.
I regret never have the oppurtunity to meet him in person. But was fortunate to have corrosponded a couple of times. Beside music that we both love I am and old country boy from South Dakota and would have love to have went coyote and game hunting with him. Maybe in the next life that may happen but that is up to the good Lord. I fully do hope he is resting in peace and his family has found peace, I know it is devastating to lose someone we love. I truly believe this life is only the beginning. We will all be with our loved ones again, and will have many many new friends.