As a bagpiper,I play many gigs.Recently I was asked by
a funeral director to play at a graveside service for a homeless man.
He had no family or friends, so the service was to be at a paupers
cemetery in the Kentucky back country.
As I was not familiar with the backwoods, I got lost,
and being a typical man, I didn’t stop for directions. I finally
arrived an hour late, and
saw that the funeral guy was evidently
gone,and the hearse was nowhere in sight.
The only people left were the diggers and crew, and they
were eating lunch. I felt bad and apologized to the men for being late.
I went to the side of the grave and looked down. The vault lid was
already in place. I didn’t know what else to do, so I started to play.
The workers put down their lunches and began to gather around.
I played out my heart and soul for this man with no family or
friends. I played as I’ve never played before for this homeless man.
As I played ‘Amazing Grace’ the workers began to weep.
They wept; I wept; we all wept together. When I finished, I packed up
my bagpipes and started for my car. Though my head hung low, my heart was full.
As I was opening the door to my car, I heard one of the
workers say in his folksy way, “Sweet Mother of Jesus, I never seen
nothin’ like that before, and I’ve been putting in septic tanks for
over twenty years.”