Toward the end of 2011 I wrote this, the second half of which (beginning with "This has been a strange year") is required reading for the rest of this post.
Fred's granddaughter made it a practice to check up on me (via email) periodically, and always emailed before the major holidays. She predicted that her mother (Fred's daughter) and her uncle (Fred's son) would be contacting me if that was OK, to ask whatever questions they thought I might be able to answer. I encouraged her to encourage them.
I never heard from her mother and didn't hear from her uncle for a long time. He was career Army and at about the time that the granddaughter and I connected he was getting ready for deployment to Iraq.
A few months ago he emailed me. He had returned to the US. He provided his phone number and asked if we might talk. I agreed, of course, and asked him for a convenient date and time.
I have not heard from him since.
After several weeks had passed I emailed the granddaughter and filled her in. I told her I didn't want to push anything, but wanted to be sure her uncle was OK. She replied immediately, saying that she would check on him and get back to me right away.
I have not heard from her since.
It's a mystery, and destined to stay that way barring some communication on their part. I have no need to poke at it.