The Long Road

If you are reading this, you are doing what Ed Bray couldn’t for more than four decades.

Bray, 89, served in World War II, fought at Normandy on D-Day and earned a slew of medals he proudly displays at his residence in Cookson, Okla.

But none of those accomplishments lightened a burden he carried his whole life: illiteracy.

The former soldier managed the minefield of embarrassment expertly.

While working a civilian job at an Air Force base until his retirement, he had a buddy assist him with paperwork. His wife of 62 years managed his handicap at home until her death four years ago.

Change was sought time and time again. But attempts to solve the the problem always ended with either Bray or the good Samaritan throwing up their hands in exasperation.

That is until Tobi Thompson came along.

A professor at nearby Northeastern State University, Thompson hit the tutorial ground walking, starting first with conversation before morphing into flash cards. Ultimately, Bray conquered his fear.

Now, he reportedly reads at the sixth-grade level, walking library aisles with a bounce in his step. Bray even relishes Karaoke.

God bless him.

My eyes welled up when I saw this piece on CBS This Morning.

I wanted to retell it. So people like you — and the long-suffering Ed Bray —  could read it.



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