Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Sad Loss

I lost a close friend this weekend.  He was 45 and he took his own life.  The senselessness of that act is just sinking in.

We hadn't seen much of him and his family in recent years.  A few years ago we reconnected for a moment and we had them over for dinner.  We then went to a play he was in to see his performance.  I often remember fondly the times when we were working together and spent a lot of time on vacation and in other parts of the country for our company. 

He was funny, really funny, comedian funny.  He was always thinking of ways to express his artistic nature.  Once we were in a company meeting.  A retirement plan was being proposed and the speaker was telling us how we could manage our contribution from the company to maximize our return.  He blurted out "Put mine all on black 17".  We couldn't stop laughing and the presenter seemed a little sheepish.

He once played a practical joke on me by sending me a letter saying I was being sued.  His timing was perfect.  I was having a bad day and he slipped the letter into my box at work.  Just as I was reading it he knocked on my door.  That was it.  I blew and he just laughed.  It was perfect.  I had been had in a major way and I knew it. 

More than being funny he cared about his job.  He worked very hard and was always thinking of ways to creatively solve challenges.  He was a real asset to the company and often they just looked at his antics and not his accomplishments.  I'm sure that is how it was for other areas of his life.

Its really sad when someone takes their own life.  I feel like there is something I could have done.  Maybe I could have told him I appreciated his work more.  Maybe I could have stood up for him more often in meetings.  I will never know.

We all have dark thoughts but what keeps us from following thru?  Maybe if we were slower to judge and quicker to be empathetic someone we know would stop short.  This is the 6th time I know of where a friend or aquaintence has taken his or her life in the past 4 years.  I wish there was something I could do to let them know someone cared.

1 comment:

The Gearheads said...

This is a nice speech for a good man. My wife mentioned his name and it threw me for a loop, my heart goes out to his wife and family, and I like you wish there was some way I could have helped him.