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Who is He and what did happen?

"He was only once crossed, and that was towards the end, when my poor father was far gone in a decline that took him off." 
 
Who is "he" in "he was only once crossed" and what does that line mean?
"that was towards the end?" WHICH? what does towards the end means?
what does far gone means and what does took him off means and this time, him means who?
 
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2 Answers

The word he in this case is referring to a male that the narrator knows. We do not know how the narrator knows or the narrator's connection to him, only that narrator is aware of who the person is. The line "he was only once crossed" can mean different things depending on your personal experiences. One way that the line could be interrupt is that this man is not someone you want to mess with. He the kind of guy, who's way you don't want to get into. Though it appears that one person had tried to get the best of this guy in the past but it didn't go well for him ( the guy who tried the man in the first half of the sentence). "That was towards the end" means that man that is being referenced at the beginning of the sentence was coming towards the end of a moment in his life, when he was crossed by someone.  "Far gone' means that there was no helping him. "Took him off" means he was no longer sound of mind. The him they are referring to his the narrator's father. Once again, this also based off I interrupted the text. Someone else might understand it differently. 
The sentence is not correct.  The phrase "took him off" is a verbal phrase which means "he was removed from something"  Such as "We took him off the plane", meaning we removed him from the plane.  There are two parts to this sentence.  The first is "He was only once crossed"  The second is different because of the word "and".  That means that something else happened either at the same time, or after, before, during, etc...
 
The only thing we know is that "He" is a male.  Also he was mad ("crossed" has two meanings--at an intersection or becoming mad. We know nothing else about this male except when he became mad--it was after a person's father became ill.
 
"Towards the end" means near the end of the time period.  For example "towards the end of the test".
 
Far gone is a verbal phrase.  This means a preposition and verb together that have special meanings.  NOT actual meanings.  In this case "far gone" means too late for something to happen.  Example, "he was far gone from his injuries"  Meaning he could not be saved.  The injuries were too bad.
 
Christopher B. Kuch, PhD.