Friday, October 8, 2010

R.I.P., Greg

I learned yesterday that Greg, who worked at one of my company's clients, had passed away. He died quickly and unexpectedly from a fast-moving cancer. He was fairly young, I think in his thirties, though I don't know for sure. He left behind a wife and two children. I cannot imagine their grief. I've never met them, but they have my deepest condolences.

Greg's death hit me hard. It's still hitting me. I can't say we were tight, because we weren't. He was my client; I was his supplier. We worked together occasionally for a few years, then kept up from time to time in email--usually from me asking him if we could do anything for him, i.e., selling to him. Despite the superficial sound of the relationship, however, I always thought of him as a friend. I feel that way about many clients, but Greg was special.

Greg was a big guy: tall, strong, fit. He'd worked a lot of crap jobs and pulled himself up by his bootstraps. Our backgrounds were similar enough in that way that we could nod at each other's stories and know the other had really understood them. He'd put himself through a lot of school to get to where he was. He smiled easily and often. He adored his wife and kids. He loved his family and wanted to stay near them always. He was restoring an old VW bus, which I had the privilege to ride in.

He was a rarity: an American man in the classic mold, one who had worked to get what he had, who understood and willingly undertook his responsibilities, who behaved honorably in every single interaction we had.

My life was richer for knowing Greg, and the world is poorer for his passing. Damn.


Anonymous said...

Well spoken. Hopefully his family sees these kind words. If not, he will......Chris.....

Mark said...

Thanks, Chris.


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