QUOTE FOR THE DAY:
“When you’re stuck sitting in a comfort zone, small problems become magnified. Get out of your comfort zone, touch the edge, and you come back with an appreciation for life.” – Barbara Warren, 1943-2008
Barbara Warren was filler in my local newspaper, I found a wire service blurb about this senior athlete tucked away and was so impressed by her story that I wanted more information. She’d led such an inspirational life and I was just starting to meet several seniors who were fascinatingly fit at my part time job at the gym.
There were a few of them, regulars. And for three years I’d see these silver foxes come every day. A few women, mostly men. Don’t be fooled by the gray hair or wrinkles, these people could kick your ass at boot camp or in the pool.
Which brings me to Don. Champion bridge player, lover of ladies and poodles, fisherman and hunter. He was the oldest guy I knew who’d met his wife on the internet. Don was fit and certainly did not look or act his 70 plus years. So, when he started having long drawn out nosebleeds last October he got it checked out before he left for to winter over in Florida. For the last year he’s been getting experimental treatments for a form of leukemia. Last week I saw him at the gym and thought he looked rather gray. On Monday of this week, Don’s wife emailed me to say that Don had passed away. The subject line said: “please forgive me for this email – it’s so impersonal”.
But I didn’t feel that. The message was brief:
Don passed away this morning in his sleep
there will be a memorial for him at our home this Saturday at noon.
Don’s wife wasn’t on Facebook, but kept everyone in her address book updated on his condition, so I was glad to know what his status was. Although I only knew him for three years, Don was my friend, and felt like a grandfather to me, although it would have been offended his ego to be considered so paternally.
The strength of this small demo I encountered almost tricked me into thinking that you could live forever. I was kind of surprised when he died and had to remind myself that he was almost 80. Time ran out.
Another email followed to invite friends and loved ones over to the house at noon, bring a lawn chair, meats provided by the Bridge Club. I have some great memories to share.