You must give time to your fellow men
even if it's a little thing, do
something for others-- something for which you get no pay but the privilege of
doing it. --ALBERT SCHWEITZER
President Abraham Lincoln often visited hospitals to talk with wounded
soldiers during the Civil War. Once, doctors pointed out a young soldier who
was near death and Lincoln went over to his bedside.
"Is there anything I can do for you?" asked the President.
The soldier obviously didn't recognize Lincoln, and with some effort he was
able to whisper, "Would you please write a letter to my mother?"
A pen and paper were provided and the President carefully began writing down
what the young man was able to say:
"My dearest mother, I was badly hurt while doing my duty. I'm afraid I'm
not going to recover. Don't grieve too much for me, please. Kiss Mary and
John for me. May God Bless you and father."...
...The soldier was too weak to continue, so Lincoln signed the letter for him
and added, "Written for your son by Abraham Lincoln."
The young man asked to see the note and was astonished when he discovered who
had written it. "Are you really the President?" he asked.
"Yes, I am, "Lincoln replied quietly. Then he asked if there was anything
else he could do.
"Would you please hold my hand?" the soldier asked. "It will help to see
me through to the end."
In the hushed room, the tall gaunt President took the boy's hand in his and
spoke warm words of encouragement until death came.
--The Best of Bits and Pieces