I found out last night that a friend of mine had passed away. He was only 30 years old.
We were not incredibly close. In fact we saw each other only on occasion. We met a few years ago when I was working at the Chamber. He was a business owner and a member. I had the opportunity to work with him on a couple of events and we had a few really great conversations. He was the type of guy who could immediately make anyone feel comfortable. He was full of ideas and was committed to our community. I was so impressed that someone so young was already so successful. He didn’t take himself too seriously though. We joked about being the next generation of leaders and how to take Lawrence by storm. And he had a great smile.
So although we weren’t close, I am overwhelmingly saddened by his passing…in a way that I can’t really explain.
I keep experiencing waves of emotion. I cannot stop thinking about his wife and what she must be going through. I picture trying to explain to his 2 year old son that Daddy is gone. I try to imagine how it is possible that we will not run into each other at an event sometime in the future and catch up with everything that has been going on in our lives. I don’t know how his parents can breathe or his friends that were with him can function…because this isn’t supposed to happen.
This isn’t supposed to happen. A healthy, young, vibrant man with a beautiful family and a wide open future should not have been taken so soon. It doesn’t make sense. It is not possible to process. He wasn’t fighting a long illness or involved an a tragic accident. What happened was tragic, of course, but this was different…one minute he was here and the next he wasn’t. And from what I understand he was alone when it happened. Was he scared? Did he know what was going on?
I consider myself a religious person. I am not a study the bible, go to church every week no matter what, pray at dinner type of Christian--but I do believe. In fact I have spent more time in prayer during the last couple of years than I have pretty much my entire life. But his death shakes that core. Because how does religion explain this man taken before it was time? I know the standard answers and to be honest—none of them are good enough.
When things like this occur it is natural to want to pull those you love close and thank God that everyone is safe and sound. It is also natural to be in awe of the complete unknowns that life holds for each one of us. Maybe awe isn’t the right word. Fear plays a big role too. How do we deal with dropping our child off at daycare or sending our family down the road on a trip?
There are no answers. There are no words even. It just doesn’t make sense.
The world was a better place because Gavin was in it and I was lucky to have known him.