I lost a friend Friday. And although he wasn't a particularly close friend, I still feel quite sad. Rick was a former co-worker of mine and was a good nurse, a hard worker, and just genuinely a nice guy. I didn't know much about his personal life except that he loved his kids. That much was evident in every conversation I ever had with him. He would talk about their school activities, or how he had built them a play center in the backyard of his home, or just about their day-to-day lives. What I didn't know about Rick was that he was a single dad. Or that he worked 2 jobs. I never heard him raise his voice in anger, or say a bad word about anybody. Really, just a nice guy.
I understand that he fell down the steps in his home while carrying in groceries. His son called 911. He was taken to a local hospital where another friend of mine just happened to be working that day. How tragic to see a friend come in to the emergency room and know that there is nothing that can be done to save him. I feel bad that Lori had to be in that position, but I also am glad to know that Rick was taken care of by someone that truly cared about him. And its a comfort to me, and I hope to his family, that Lori was there.
Out of this tragedy though, comes a blessing for 11 families; Rick's family decided, in their grief, that someone should benefit from his death and donated his organs to The Gift of Life program. That just gives me goose bumps. How unselfish and admirable is that? And that would be just like Rick; to offer help where it is needed in whatever way he could.
In the news article that I linked, it states that his neighbors agree that this tragedy should be a reminder to slow down and take the time to appreciate your loved ones. If you're reading this, please remember to do that. Rick would want it that way.