Major downer inside... you have been warned.

Chevy350Ben

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I found out yesterday that my best friend of over 20 years died this weekend.

I know he wasn't a part of THIS family, but he was my brother. Or at least as close as I ever found to one. We have alot of history together. He helped me wrench on my blazer back in high school.

He was a pilot for UPS, and leaves behind a wife and two kids. 15, and 13.

Obviously he was my age. Just turned 40 a week ago. We as men hardly share how we feel about each other. But we all have that best friend. Give them a hug and tell them you love them. You may not get another chance.

RIP Patrick. Rest easy brother. Till I see you again.

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diesel4me

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My condolences to you and his family on his loss..:(

The suckiest part of life is never knowing "when"..your number is up..you take friends and family for granted--then one day,they aren't here any more..and your life is changed forever..

I can relate to how you must feel now..

I lost two of my closest friends I'd known since Jr.High school,over 20 years, in 1994,they were only 36 years old,neither were married or had kids though,but they were not unhealthy and their deaths were a big shock .You just dont expect someone that young to die --maybe from an accident,but not health problems..

One of them ,Randy,was never seriously ill his whole life ,he'd only had the usual colds or flu bugs,but when he hit 35 he began feeling weaker and started taking a nap after work daily,and lost interest in his projects and hobbies..he was sort of a "Farm Boy" who liked the rural life style..strong as an ox,very determined,he'd get things done everyone else gave up on..and he'd give you the shirt off his back,even if it was a stranger..You could trust him,he was about the only friend I had I did trust fully..

After a few months of further decline,he was taken to a doctor and diagnosed with Marfan Syndrome,a heart condition often seen in tall lanky men,and both of us fit that description..

It was determined a pacemaker would help him live a normal life,and one was installed at a local hospital--the wires "broke off" it somehow (doctors claimed he may have pulled them out when the drugs they used wore off and he woke up --they had to open him back up again and replace the unit..)...after 8 days in the hospital,he was sent home..

I went to visit him on day 11..we watched some TV that night and I thought he looked good and he said he felt OK..
Kathy Mattea happened to be on a Celebrity Jepordy special while he was in the hospital,and I had taped it for him to watch--she was one of his favorite artists and she ended up winning $10,000 for charity..
He was elated to see her win..he had met her a few times and she knew both of us well after meeting her after some concerts..

I left around 11 pm..

The next day I got a call from his mom,telling me he "died in his bed,we think around 5 am--heart failure"...

Of course I was stunned..even though I knew his condition was very serious..he seemed to be recovering well..

I had gone to a flea market that morning,and found a big box of magazines I knew he'd like,so I bought them..he never got to read them..on the box was a date -- "Nov.16"..no year though..
It was the same date as the day he died..
I was pretty creeped out about that..

Life for me changed dramatically after that..going to his wake,seeing all his treasured posessions being tossed in a dumpster or sold,given away,ripped a hole in my heart that'll never heal..

We were like brothers,spent a lot of time together,hardly a day went by we didn't hang out or fool with his truck,jeep,or tractor,or just talk and watch our favorite artists on TV..

His doctor had told his mother he'd be "fine" once the pacemaker was installed..after he died ,the surgeon told her "he only had 20% of his heart capacity left--he was doomed,they never should have put in a pacemaker--he had a bad heart valve!"..she feels they just operated on him to get the insurance money..she should have sued,but never did..
I still feel he'd have lived if he'd have been sent to Boston to one of the "good" hospitals..

My other friend "Larry" was a bit of a daredevil,I always thought if he died young,it'd be due to a car accident or some other "stunt" he liked to pull..but he became depressed,started guzzling Segrams 7 & ginger ale to drown his sorrows..
He had moved in to my apartment when I moved back near my hometown in the early 1980's ,I even got him a job at the parts store I was working at..he hardly ever stayed there though--he had many friends and girl friends and "lived" with them,mostly he just used his room for storage..
I didn't mind him paying half the rent and not being there very much..

He began having irregular heart beats and various other symptoms of heart disease and had to start taking pills for angina and heart blockage,and he refused to stop drinking--he smoked like a chimney since grade school too.
I ended up moving back in with my parents after they were getting frail and needed me there,so Larry moved to CT,where one of his other friends lived.
He was about 80 miles away,but still came to visit me most every weekend..We had planned to put new intake gaskets on his car the upcoming weekend...
But my mother got a phone call from his sister,who lives in my town..
Told her that Larry was dead...this was 9 months to the day after Randy died..and I was still grieving his loss..

One night after drinking too much and taking his heart meds, he vomited in bed while lying on his back,and sufocated on his own peuke..just like on of his favorite "heros" John Bohnam (Led Zeppelin)..one of his favorite songs was Bad Company's "Shooting Star",and he went out just like "Johnny" did in the song..
I often wonder if it was intentional..:thinking:..

Again,sorry for your loss man...take care of yourself..I know it'll mess with your head ,probably forever..some things you just cant forget..
 

Big Ray

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Sorry for your loss..

I tell my Bros I love them everytime we get together. One was a major homophobe, he couldn't speak. He's getting there...

Were all here for a little while...life is but a vapor, gone with the midday sun.
 
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