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Last summer I changed churches and choirs -- didn't agree with the decisions (especially his way of making them) by the fairly new priest at the Episcopal church I'd attended for almost 40 years (since moving to Topeka).

And also changed lakes to sail on -- went from a mooring on our local Lake Shawnee to renting a slip at Lake Perry Marina where I'd kept 3 previous sailboats and sailed maybe 15 years.

I was delighted to find that one of the skippers, Alan, on the pier my boat's slip is located is also a member of the Episcopal church & choir I'd just joined. And Alan socializes with a gang of people some of whom I also used to party with -- I was looking forward to getting to know him better.

Alan is 60, a healthy looking, trim, athletic guy. He and his wife were recently visiting their married daughter in Florida when he had a stroke followed shortly after by a heart attack (or maybe the other way around). He never regained consciousness and showed no reaction to stimulation.

He was kept on life support for about 10 days without improvement until his family decided to discontinue it a week ago.

A memorial service will be held next Sunday afternoon and our choir will sing some of Alan's favorite anthems.

His sailing friends at the lake were unaware of all this so I called a few, got their e-mail addies, and sent them the details, asking them to let his other sailing friends know.

Gosh, life can be unexpectedly short, can't it?

I'm tempted to say that perhaps Alan's way is the way to go but I don't think so -- I'd prefer a bit more notice.

It does remind me, however, of a joke Garrison Keillor once told on his weekly two hour weekly radio show, "Prairie Home Companion" --

"When I go, I want to go like my grandfather did -- smiling and in my sleep, NOT screaming and yelling like the passengers in the car he was driving."

 

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Oh my goodness, Bob! What a blow for you, for everyone!
(Keillor... always the wry guy, hm?)
 

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Since I work in health care, I'm am constantly reminded that we never know what the next moment might bring, and how our lives can change drastically. How tragic for your friend and his family. Oh, and the Garrison Keeler thingy? Pretty funny, as long as you don't think about the poor passengers...... and I want to remind everyone to always wear clean underwear, because like I said, you never know what might happen to you.....
 

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I am so sorry to hear, but working in the health field, even though the financial part of it, I do know there are no guarantees. That is why each day is precious to me no matter what problems I have in my personal life. I consider those piddly.
 

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Over the past three years I lost 3 friends who never even reached 55.......I count my blessings........and when it is my time.........I would prefer the fast way.
And I do make sure my undies are clean.....lol
Garrison Keeler......very funny........
Still trying to learn this new board........can't find the smilies.
 

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I'm sorry about your friend, Bob. That is a great joke.
 

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I'm sorry to hear of your sad loss.

I agree with you about being unsure as to "the best way to go".

I lost my Mom to cancer when she was just 52, we knew the inevitable was coming and had time to get affairs in order, say our goodbyes etc... but knowing your future..or lack of it... wasn't a nice experience for Mom or me.

My good friend on the other hand lost her father very suddenly to a heart attack, he had gone for a couple of beers with his friends and never came home.

On the plus side he had no idea what was coming, he was doing something he enjoyed with people he liked, it was quick and relatively painless, his family however didn't have their chance for goodbyes.

It is never easy is it?
 

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I'm sorry for your loss.

And I'm sure Alan is singing with unbridled joy in the gigantic choir 'up there.' If he was a tenor, maybe he's making harmonies w/my Dad.
 

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I am sorry to hear about your friend. My Dad was a surprise at 62. He had a heart attack cutting the grass (which he loved to do). My Mom died at 66 after a 6 month battle with Cancer. I will take my Dad's way anyday. I didn't havee to see him suffer.
 

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May your friend rest in peace, Bob. Prayers for his family and friends.

I think the answer depends on the timing... Everyone wants to die in their sleep, when they are old and life is an obstacle. But dieing suddenly when you are still enjoying life seems much more tragic.

Although I guess if its your time, you can't change that... I think it would be better to not have your loved ones suffer from watching you suffer...

What really bothers me is that my parents are both in their early 60's, and I am so not ready to lose them any time soon!
 
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