“God bless Dave for his graceful departure,” was Melody’s response to my text informing her of the passing of our friend Dave.
“Amen!” I responded.
Not just for, but from my perspective God blessed Dave with a graceful departure. And thank heaven for that.
Another friend summed it up, “He went on his own terms.”
Certainly he did.
In a blog post from nearly ten years ago, I once compared my feelings about cancer to how the protagonist in Twister felt about tornados.
“You’ve never seen it miss this house, and miss that house, and come after you!”
I’ve watched it hit my house, and then hit this house, and that house, and this house, and that house and then come after my house again.
And once again cancer has snuffed out the mortal life of a good, good man too soon.
Dave has been a friend to our family for well over 15 years. I have lots of stories of how we grew together and of love and support extended and services rendered throughout the years as he has been my family’s home teacher.
But let me just record the most recent.
A few months back I was having a rough day. My heart was heavy at the particular suffering of a few people close to me. The weight of sorrow was a bit overwhelming. I happened to drop a loaf of cinnamon bread by for Jane and Dave. I’m not sure I even talked to Dave, but in my conversation I had mentioned a little of what was weighing on my heart. Jane must have relayed it to Dave, because a little later I got this text:
Aside from the fact that someone so entrenched in middle of this years-long battle with cancer spent hard-won energy thinking about me, what touched me most was that Dave remembered. He had clearly paid attention to some tiny detail of my life from not one, but two summers ago. And then he remembered.
Jane and Dave and I went to Yuki the next evening. It was hot. And the heat took its toll on Dave. But he enjoyed his shaved ice. And we made a good memory together.
And I learned an important lesson about paying attention. And remembering.
Speaking of remembering…
Earlier this day as I was driving towards the Stewart home to take some food in for the family and I said out loud even as I remembered. “I owe Dave a key lime pie.” Key lime pie is one of Dave’s favorites. And I do in fact owe him one. I certainly hope they have key limes and sweetened condensed milk in heaven.