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If You Love Bob, Honk!
Andy Bustanoby
(C) April 16, 2005

     It was the most inspiring and uplifting funeral I have ever
     conducted or been to.  Bob, my friend for over forty years, was
     well-known for his love for animals, children and lost souls.  Many
     of those who turned out for the memorial service were blessed by
     God's gift of Bob to the church.  But it was his love for animals,
     recounted by those eulogizing him, that amused us and made our
     sorrow easier.  In fact, it is the only funeral service I can
     remember where the mourners laughed.

     Bob, the animal lover, kept all kinds of interesting creatures on
     his property in Upper Marlboro, Maryland.  Among them were goats.
     One day his goats got loose, and one of them, with an unusual taste,
     was found eating the siding off a neighbor's house.

     He also kept an emu--a large, flightless bird that resembles an
     ostrich.  A woman in the neighborhood, driving past his house one
     day, was startled to see this bird standing in the road.  She
     managed to drive around it, but the bird challenged her to a race.
     As she picked up speed, the bird ran alongside of her.  It finally
     pealed off as she left the neighborhood.

     These stories brought much laughter and tender memories from all of
     us.  But the thing that capped it all off was the grave-side
     service.  Bob, having served in the Coast Guard in his youth, was
     given a military honor guard.  Three Army riflemen and a bugler
     stood off from the grave while two Coast Guard NCOs stood at the
     head and foot of the flag-draped  casket.

     After committing Bob's body to the ground, I paused before giving
     the benediction for the rendering of military honors.  The riflemen
     fired their three-round salute and the bugler played taps.  The
     honor guard removed the flag, and as they folded it, we had a

     No, it wasn't the Navy or Air Force.  It was a flight of geese,
     loudly honking!  I thought, How appropriate.  Yes, animal creation
     is also remembering Bob.  And I know what they're saying.  They're
     saying, "If you love Bob, honk!"

                  We sorrow not as others who have no hope.

                     In Memory of Robert E. Drennan, Jr.
                               Asleep in Jesus
                              February 15, 2005

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