I lost a friend to pancreatic cancer. He died February 18th, six months after he was diagnosed. His service was yesterday.
We were not close but, still, I feel overwhelming sadness at his loss. Our loss, I should say. He is far better off than he was in the last six months of his life. He tried chemo but it was too much. He quit treatments then found hospice, morphine, and an exit from what had become a very painful existence.
I miss him.
We met him on Lake Washington in 2006 when we were in the market for a new boat. We found one we liked online and Patrick had one just like it. We introduced ourselves and Patrick told us about the boat dealer in Portland where he got his boat.
On his recommendation, we went to Portland and purchased our boat - a 2003 Formula 37 PC with the name of Boom Boom. We only found out later that Boom Boom was Patrick's trade in.
We also found out that Patrick used to entertain quite a lot on Boom Boom. We would frequently be in our favorite anchorage spot when a boat would float by, the occupants waving to us until they realized we weren't who they thought we were. Patrick had a lot of friends and Boom Boom was well known on the lake.
We renamed her Double Jack but the keys are still labeled Boom Boom. We'll think of Patrick every time we go boating and we'll be forever grateful - not only for the boat but for all the people he introduced us to with whom we have become very good friends.
He was 53.
Over the weekend, we learned one of our friends lost his son in an auto accident. He was 29.
Needless to say, I'm feeling pretty sad.
And, it might be the only time in my life I can say I'm glad I have a ton of work to do.