I heard some sad news yesterday and it's been on my mind a lot over the last 24 hours. I heard that a former co-worker and friend of mine had passed away. His name was Jerry. He was a really great guy and when I heard the news, I was truly startled because he was one of those people that was truly ALIVE!
He passed away while he was on a vacation with his brother. Jerry loved to travel and often did so with his brother :) He loved going out to the western US states with his brother to hang out and do 'guy stuff'. And when I worked with him, he would always come back from his vacation with a smile on his face and he always had an adventurous story to tell. He was a man of a certain age, an adventurer by nature and loved the heck out of life. I used to call him 'The Senator' because I told him he looked like a statesman of some sort. He laughed when I called him that and would sometimes come into the office doing a politician-like wave. When he would come into the office after his vacations, he would bring back photos sometimes to let me see what beautiful or interesting place he had been. A few years ago, right after I moved here to England, he sent me a photo CD with pics from his latest trip with his brother. I was so touched because we were still in touch and he was thoughtful enough to continue his tradition of sharing his photos with me even though I was thousands of miles away. That's the kind of genuine person that he was :)
We have kept in touch by email from time to time and he had recently signed onto Facebook, so we had connected there. I was so thrilled that he was on there so that I could see what he was up to day to day. I saw recently that he was headed off on his vacation...
I was truly shocked when I heard about him passing away and even though I've been here in England for five and a half years now and I hadn't seen him physically in all that time, I miss him as if I just left our office yesterday. He was one of the good guys in this world. I will always miss my friend and I'm glad that I have the memories of those days that seem so long ago now.
Life is so precious and we can be gone in the blink of an eye. We are all so blessed to know those that we love and care about in our lives. I'm proud to have known Jerry and to have called him my friend.