Condolence letter from Charles G. Loring to William Dehon upon the death of his son Arthur Dehon, who was killed at Fredericksburg.
My Dear Friend,
I cannot forbear [???] of my heartfelt sympathy with you in this time of affliction – Altho we seldom much, – my heart always beats warmly towards you, – & can never be forgetful of your many kind & self sacrificing services in days long gone by.
I had not the pleasure to know Arthur, but I could not doubt what the son of such a mother & such a father must be; & every where hear that he was all you could desire.
You have therefore this font of consolations, in his character & honorable life, – that it will ever be delightful to remember him as your child, – & a cause of gratitude that he was given to you even for the brief period of his life. To this you haved added the hardy [???]
reflection of his noble & honorable death; – that he fell in defence of the highest and holiest cause in which a young man could die; – and that death at such a cause sacrifices a life however short is of far higher value than a long one, as ordinary [???].
I too, as you know, have a son in the army; & my mind was, as yours, full of anxiety during the battle, with knowing that the telegraph might not, at any moment, announce his fate. But I felt & in the future conflicts in which he may be engaged, shall feel that if he must then lose his, I had rather have my dead son, thus dying nobly in defense of his Country & freedom & law than any living one insensible to his duty.
May God bless & comfot you my Dear Friend until reunited with those you so dearly and most justly loved.
Ever with great affection
your friend Charley Loring
Arthur Dehon was William Dehon’s son and a 2nd Lieutenant in Webster’s 12 MA Infantry. He was killed in action at Fredericksburg.