Sunday, June 16, 2013

In Loving Memory

In Loving Memory
J.C. Kendall 1962-2013

It is with a sad heart I write these words while sitting at my desk at work.  Today was a normal day just like any other until my wife had me call her up to tell us this person we had never met, but who had touched our lives greatly, had passed away.  She was concerned it was some kind of joke as I hadn’t said anything yet, but I had merely not checked in to see what was going on so this was the first I had heard of it.  

To say that I was shocked is an understatement.  

As someone who works in the middle of nowhere, talking to things millions of miles away, on strange rotating shifts, it is rare anymore that I make a connection with anyone who isn’t a coworker.  Thanks to the internet however I have been able to make a few close acquaintances from across the globe, most notably my wife, and then more recently J.C.  

J.C. was a whirlwind of wit, humor, and opinion that caught my attention with his first sentence.  He quickly converted the “novelty” of Google+ into something I checked on a regular basis.  His posts became the reason I logged into the system and eventually made as many connections as I did.  Not only was his effervescent and jolly personality contagious, but his ideals and opinions were similar to mine.  

Not long after I started reading his work he began reading mine; which as my wife will tell you I can never get enough of.  Yet J.C. was no simple sycophant or passing commenter, but someone who actively pushed and encouraged me to actually go out and do something.    From agreeing with me that Kickstarter was “something to watch” to pushing for and even paying for the domain for this very blog J.C. was a force of good and change in my life that I haven’t had for some time.  

It is rare for someone you have never met in person to have any real effect on your life, let alone the kind of effect J.C. had on my life.  Not only has he driven me to grow and push beyond my basic comfortable life, but he reached out to my wife and brought her into contact with the love of his life Su Ann.  When my wife needed encouragement and affirmation from a source beyond me Su Ann and J.C. were there in ways that I couldn’t.  Sadly I don’t know if he ever realized how much he’s helped the two of us.  

Su Ann and J.C. happy together

In closing I just have to say that people like J.C. are few and far between.  Someone who speaks their mind and kicks your arse when they think you need it is a special kind of person that should be cherished even if you don’t agree with them.  Like a second father or an older brother I never had, J.C. was a voice of support and encouragement from a quarter I didn’t even know I was missing.  Life is an ephemeral thing that we take for granted that it takes the death of someone closer than you thought they were to get through.  Cherish those around you, thank those who give you feedback even if you don’t agree, and always, ALWAYS try to do what you want to do.  Go for your dreams!  As J.C. once told me, “If you don’t actually try you’ll never succeed.”  Push yourself, push others, and most of all love everyone as fully as you can.  For they might not be here tomorrow.    

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