In April of 2007 I had the honor and the ability to fly back to my home state to see my cousin, Doug -- for the last time. I cannot and will not attempt to express eloquently enough how much it meant to me to travel down this road. I ventured into a world practically unknown, as it has taken me two decades to open up my eyes and note I have a family that lives far away from my own life and heart. Reality has struck and the hands of time will pass by me no more as it has all these years, because I have blood to which I want to reach out and hold onto...and never let go.
My brother and I visited with him briefly -- just a few hours. For me, this was the extent of the efforts I made to get to know who this man was (albeit I was given the opportunity for 20 some years). Deeply regretful I am and yet he touched my life in only a few short ticks of the clock. He was funny, kind, giving and gentle. His loving, caring family stood by him. His best friend was there too. He got him to laugh and think about a hobby he loved -- fixing up cars.
For those of you who knew Doug, I hope you will go to the comments section (at the bottom of this post), take a moment and share something about him so we can all be touched by his presence here on earth.
To the family who watched him travel through the journey of life, I extend my deepest sympathies and love to you as you remember him in all that you do -- moving forward and always upward in your thoughts and prayers making each day brighter and every tomorrow a bit more peaceful.