Death of a Hero

This trapper’s wife was brought to the Alaska wilderness. She died when their child was about two years old. To go out in the woods in the course of this trapping, the trapper had sometimes left the child for a few hours in the care of their faithful dog. One afternoon, when he was out, a terrible blizzard came up. The storm was so terrible that he had to take refuge in a hollow tree to save his life.

At daybreak he rushed to his cabin. The door was open. His dog who looked at him from the corner of his eyes was covered with blood. The father’s blood froze in his veins. Just one thing had happened his dog had turned wolf and had killed his child. He reached for the ax and in a moment the same was buried into the skull of his trusted animal. Like a maniac he scanned the scene. In hopeless desperation he uncovered the gruesome remnants of his cabin. Tipped over, the cracked furniture was telling a story of a battle that had taken place here an hour before. A faint cry came from under the bed. Again his heart seemed paralyzed. There he found his offspring safe and sound. Just a moment of pause to cuddle his dear one in his arms and he was to determine whence the blood on his dog came.

The answer came just a second later. The sad riddle was solved. In a remote corner, there it was a dead wolf, his huge mouth showing fangs intended for the baby which his faithful dog had saved. Just a moment of caution and he could have held both his child and his hero dog in his arms. Remorse took over instead.

This is a story that my Mother told me as a young lad. Don’t be hasty. Weigh things carefully before you strike. When your blood pressure gets up, count ten. “School Thy Feelings, Oh, My Brother” is one of the best bits of advice ever given. Beware of mistakes made in taking too seriously circumstantial evidence. Think before you act. Don’t forget that truth is very often stranger than fiction. - Marvin O. Ashton

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