I found out over the weekend a college friend passed away, unexpectedly and too young. He was older than me and I saw him in person after college only a few times at parties as he was in graduate school close by and those wild weddings of your first few friends who get married right out of college. However, thanks to social media I did see him and caught glimpses of his life in Texas, which was all taken away too quickly. I am sad for his family and friends. I am awed that he was memorialized by those on the International Space Station (he worked for NASA after his finishing his PhD). I laugh at how the life of the party, who could toss them back with the best of them in college literally became doctor, a NASA employee, and although not an astronaut he trained them. You can see the video from the International Space Station here, which Time has included as part of their incredible Year In Space series.
This year has had many wonderful things happen but also some low points that are challenging to move past. My Mom passing, watching friends get cancer, and now hearing about Vic’s passing. It’s a lot to take in and has left me reeling, Is this how it goes? I watch friends be sick, I watch my friends parents get older and pass on, and now I watch friends pass away. I remember my Nana, when she was over 90 told me she no longer read the paper. “Why Nana, you like the paper?” I recall asking. She answered simply, “Everyone I know is already dead.” I thought that was a clever, but sad, comment. Now I know where it came from and it has rocked me to the core.
It is all definitely a take stock moment. It’s a wake up call to the cliche that tomorrow isn’t a guarantee. More importantly what did I do yesterday to make my life and the life of those around me better, filled with more joy?
My friend’s passing is another call, another reminder and one I won’t ignore. I may not get things perfect, I won’t get it right everyday, but I am going to try really hard for the boy who reached for the stars.
Victor Hurst IV – until we see each other on the Briggs bus in the sky….