This past week has probably been one of the worst weeks I can ever remember. A week ago Saturday a very good friend of mine was killed in a horrible automobile accident. His son was also in the car and suffered serious lower body injuries and was airlifted out to the hospital where he remains. I don’t think I will ever forget listening to my wife scream ‘Oh my God!’ over and over when I broke the news to her that Sunday morning.
This accident has hit so close to home it’s scared the hell out of me. My friend was my age. I’ve known him for 20 years. Our wives have been close friends for that same amount of time. Our kids (he has a son and daughter) are all the same age and play together at home, in school and on various sports teams. I look at a picture of him and his family and I see my family. It could just have easily been me.
That’s probably one of the worst parts for me. I’ve seen how badly this has scared my family. My wife has been texting me almost constantly asking random questions. I know she doesn’t really need the answers, she just wants to get a reply from me. My oldest daughter has been having trouble sleeping since the funeral. I can hear her wandering around the house and can see her peering around the doorway to my office late at night just to check and make sure I’m still around. I was 45 minutes late from a scout council meeting last night and my son started to panic asking where I was, why I wasn’t home and why I was so late. My youngest daughter just sort of becomes my shadow when I’m home quietly following me from room to room.
I will be spending some time over the next couple of weeks working on my friends house for him. His wife and daughter are staying at a Ronald McDonald house while the son is in the hospital. He was in the middle of several projects at home which I will finish while they are away. His wife has also asked me to see if I can get into his computer systems. We were both pretty avid video gamers and computer geeks and like me, he has several systems set up all through the house. His wife has no idea how to get into them or even operate them. Even their phone system, which is vonage, is currently down and she can’t get it working. The worst part is all their family photos from the past few years are digital which means they are locked away on the computer where she can’t get to them.
I also have the task of trying to track down email addresses & passwords, online bank accounts… basically anything internet related of his that I can get into so she can start finalizing everything. Part of what I’ve been doing the past few nights is cataloging all of my internet accounts/passwords and locking them in the safe so if something does happen to me, my family won’t have to go through all this to get into our records.
Side note: the rainy gloomy weather last week was pretty appropriate. I was worried this past Saturday since the forcast called for heavy rain and thunderstorms the day of the funeral…. but the storms never materialized. I guess the weather decided to give us a bit of a break.
Side note #2: It seems that a lot of people need a refresher on funeral processions. Specifically on 695 and the Parkville area.
Maryland. The law allows anyone in a procession to pass through a red light as long as the first vehicle in the procession went through it while it was still green. This privilege is accorded only if a vehicle’s headlights are on. While the procession goes through the red signal, any other vehicle with a green light can enter the intersection only if it will not cross the procession’s path (Md. Code Ann. § 21-207).
Would it really have been THAT much of a hasel to wait 3-4 minutes for the procession to clear the intersections? It is really THAT difficult to show the slightest amount of respect for anyone else?
That being said, I was struck by the site of complete strangers on the side of the road stopping and removing their hats as we drove by. They were, of course, much older than the morons who were cutting off the procession.