ticket to ride…

A dear friend of mine from high school passed away this morning. He had battled an aggressive cancer for over a decade and his passing is truly a blessing. As I called each of our gang to spread the heavy news, a bevy of feelings, memories and emotions began to resurface.

When I started high school I was leaving the awfulness of junior high behind and trying to start fresh. At my new school, I was lucky enough to meet a group of friends that accepted me warts and all. Daniel was one of that group. He was the epitome of acceptance. He was one of those people that was friends with everyone. We had study hall together my sophomore year and it was great. He was a good listener and I never felt judged. He was also a huge pain in the ass. We were in high school. Everyone was a huge pain in some one’s ass at one time or another. It’s the law.

At one point, Daniel left my high school to attend another across town. We were in and out of touch after that but each time we were together it was as if we picked up exactly where we left off. He remained on the list of “Friends You Can Call at 2 in the Morning No Matter What”.

As his cancer waged its heinous and unrelenting war, his smile never faded. He graduated from law school and passed the bar during breaks from treatment. He didn’t complain and didn’t let any of us know how badly he was feeling. He always asked about my children and put everyone else first. A true fighter. A few years ago, I saw him play guitar with a couple of guys from high school and he looked like he had won the lottery. He was so full of life. How interesting that the one of us with the most to bitch about was the happiest to be there. A great night that I will never forget.

I’ve often heard the comment “he went too soon” in reference to someone dying. While it was not too soon for Daniel to be released from his cancerous purgatory, it was too soon for a sweet, smart friend who at 35 never got his ticket to enter the adult amusement park. Rest in peace my dear friend…and enjoy the rides…


One Response to “ticket to ride…”

  1. Felix C. Yarboro Says:

    Oh, how beautifully put! BOAT

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