Thursday, October 25, 2012 5:03 AM
Just wanted to let you know my family and I think about you and pray for you and your family everyday. I always check in to read your latest updates and can't help but both laugh and cry whenever I read them. This is the first time leaving a comment since it's hard for me to express things sometimes. Suppose it's about damn time, though.
I remember the many times you and I would hang out as kids growing up, horsing around causing mischief and mayhem - even as altar boys! The many great memories are still there in my mind and hope they have stayed with you as well. My dad always liked you...and you knew my dad... he was a hard man to impress, but you made the cut! But that was no surprise. Growing up, you always had many friends. You made everyone laugh and everyone wanted to be around you...from grade school to high school. From the days as students at Good Shepherd School where we formed the "Seven Stooges" for a talent show and said some pretty "adult themed" jokes to an assembly full of catholic faculty and parents...oh boy... and the days at St. Joseph's church where we cleaned the pews and got paid with half dollars from Fr. Cross...and as altar boys trying to hold our laughter during mass when a certain old priest had a particular gas issue and let it out with a vengeance...suppose I could go on and on and write a pretty damn funny book! I thank God that I had a best friend like you growing up.
Though we drifted and went our different ways in high school, from time to time we would run into each other. A few years after high school, you came to my dad's funeral with tears in your eyes, saying he was like a dad to you. I went to your grandmother's funeral not too long after and felt I lost a grandmother myself. I mean, how many times did your grandparents take me in and feed me and watch Bugs Bunny or Gilligan's Island on their TV? Or take us over to their pool and watch us swim? Heck, I think I even finally taught myself how to swim at that pool! (Course, you didn't help by dunking my head under a few times and putting me in a "Sergeant Slaughter" neck hold! Good times!) Even when I moved away down south, we would still happen to run into each other - whether at a 10k run or at an Italian restaurant where you met my future wife. And of course, I thank God you were able to come to our wedding a couple years after that! And each time, I was always happy to see that you still had that great sense of humor.
Of course, your mom and dad were like my second parents. Whether they had a choice or not, I would wind up at your house more often than my own! Many dinners, church events, school events - you name it - they were pretty amazing. (I hope they never did the math on the amount of food I must have eaten!) And today, they shine more than ever. If anyone ever wants to see God's love in action, all they need to do is see how your mother, your father and your sisters care and love for you in this time of trial and tribulation. Their love and care for you is an incredible affirmation of what true Faith and true Love really is. It's truly proof of God. Hang in there, my old friend and continue to grow stronger in mind, body and Spirit.
I will be in town over the holidays and would very much like to see you again. Glad to hear you like to play Uno. I play that with my sons Andrew and Nicholas many times. May God continue to heal you and comfort you and your kids and your family.