He lived. He laughed. He loved. He left.
Those were the words that went across the screen of a slide show of my late cousin Johnny Van Patten. I like them. They describe him perfectly. They may be from a book or something. I'm not sure.
The last time I saw Johnny was sometime in the 1980s if I remember correctly but we corresponded and talked frequently so I feel as though I've been in touch with him for all those years.
Saturday, October 22, my wife and I and my sister and her husband traveled to Brooklyn, NY to attend a memorial service for Johnny. We then went to a restaurant for a buffet lunch where we got to reconnect with many long-lost relatives. It was a great afternoon marred by the fact that it was the death of a loved one that brought us together as is so often the case.
It's a harsh reminder to take the time to reach out to people before it's too late. We're not getting any younger-at least I'm not!