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145
FAREWELL TO A HERO

They walked away together in a sorrowful silence.

At the School that day at luncheon every one was talking of the calamity. There was general depression; it was not merely because the loss of the captain of the crew would be serious, but it was also a tribute to Sheldon’s personality.

There were other boys in the Sixth Form who were more respectfully admired because they had greater force—Blanchard, for instance, and perhaps Durant and Payne; but Sheldon’s following adored him. There was hardly a Third Former who frequented the gymnasium who had not had the privilege of feeling Sheldon’s muscles and calling him Tom; he was kind and friendly to them all, and always pretended to know them even if he could n’t remember their names; and his very enjoyment of their admiration endeared him to them.

“If everybody is so gloomy about it here,” said Lawrence, “it must be a regular funeral over at the Upper; I wonder how Tom stands it.”