I spent time at my family home on my way to Germany but was anxious to get to my next adventure. I was completely surprised so see Ed at the Frankfurt Airport greet me on my arrival. He drove me to the my new home at Spangdahlem AB which was about an hour and a half south. Ed and I instantly moved from acquaintances to best friends within days which was enough for me and spent many evenings with his family. Three months after I arrived in Germany, his wife left with his son John to go back to school and find herself. We continued to be great friends and went everywhere together. In July, the Personnel Office where we both worked had a family outing on the 17th. We rode on a charter bus to the Rhine River where we boarded a boat for a day of cruising on the river. That summer was one of the hottest recorded summers in Europe so we came with lots of wine from the Mosel River was iced down in coolers. The combination of the heat and the ice cold wine was not a great combination for sobriety. This was the one and only time I have ever seen Ed get drunk and he was very, very drunk. When we got off the boat he threw up a couple of times on the way back to the bus (assisted by a few beers at a local gasthaus). The Colonel’s wife was furious that Ed was drunk in front of the enlisted guys and she told a couple of guys to put him in the back of the bus. Rather than let him be exiled alone I joined him to keep him company. He quickly passed out and I went to sleep. When I woke up, Ed had fallen over and his head was in my lap. With Ed passed out, I screwed up all my courage and leaned over to tell him I loved him. It turned out that Ed was not asleep and he told me he loved me too. When we got back to the base I stayed with him that night and we have been a couple ever since. Shortly after this event, we moved into an apartment in a quaint German village. After a couple of years of complete bliss, Ed’s wife contacted Ed to say she was going to send John to live with him. We ended up having so split up our household because Ed needed to move into base housing to be close to the American Elementary School. Because our offices were across the hall from each other we still spent most of our time together. I discretely spent many nights and weekend at his place on the base, A few months later, Ed was presented with a major hiccup that devastated me. Ed’s wife contacted him and said she would like to try to get back together. I was a hodge podge of emotions but anger was to most significant among them. In retrospect, I know that because of the type of man Ed is, he could not have made any other choice for John’s sake. I don’t question his love for me nor how difficult his decision had to be but Ed believed he needed to give it a try. I had already received my next assignment to Mildenhall, England. The plan had been that Ed would also work on getting an assignment to England. After his wife’s call, he put his search for an English assignment on hold. He felt if he was going to get back together with Maggie, it made more sense to return stateside. She arrived and stayed for about a week. That was one of the longest weeks of my life with feelings of extreme pain, self pity and sorrow that I couldn’t share. At the end of the week, Ed told his wife it couldn’t work. He told her about his relationship with me and, because of that relationship, he couldn’t return to their marriage that she abandoned. She left Germany about a week later. Ed began working on his reassignment and was given orders to Bentwaters, England. Ed’s new assignment was only 40 to 50 miles away from Mildenhall. I moved to England. Ed and John followed a couple of months later.