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How will we face death when it comes?

I have a friend/co-worker I've know for about 15 years. He isn't the kind of friend I socialize with but he is a person I've always respected for his knowledge, dedication, and he has been a true pleasure to work with.
We both had the same Dr last year when we had spinal fusion surgery and became a little closer because of that. While I got better after the surgery, he got worse. (It had nothing to do with the surgery as we later found out) He is only 39 and has two kids under 10. In January, they told him he has ALS. Last month, his lung capacity went down by 30% in a three week period. He is dying. It is doubtful if he will live more than a few more weeks. There is a military retirement ceremony for him this weekend. He is being medically retired so his wife and kids will still get some benefits. I can't believe the courage he has shown throughout these past few months. He has not complained once. He spent the time putting his affairs in order both at work as well as for his family. This really made me wonder if I would have the courage and composure this young man has demonstrated, if I had to face what he is facing. I'll be seeing him at the ceremony on Saturday, most likely, for the last time, and I really don't know what I can say to him. I'm not looking for advice here or anything like that. I just felt a need to say something about him. The courage we see in others can have a big impact on how we look at ourselves.

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JustJimColos avatar Life
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@2743937

My friend, Rip VanWinkle, the person I made the post about, passed away today at his home surrounded by his family. (Yes, that was his real name.)

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@2743952

I agree that it might be easier as we get close to the end, but I'm looking at that as a person who is getting closer to having completed a full life.

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@2743973

Ever notice that as we get older and hear of a death of someone we know, one of the first things we do, is subtract our age from the one who died.

Death is scary, it's the end of all we know, if he's toughing that out then he has my respect. Awaiting certain death, being killed by your own body, it's one of my fears.

I am speechless Jim.
I've never know anyone with courage and strength like you've described.

@Budwick I am speechless Jim. I've never know anyone with courage and strength like you've described.

My friend, Rip VanWinkle, the person I made the post about, passed away today at his home surrounded by his family. (Yes, that was his real name.)

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@2743986

My friend, Rip VanWinkle, the person I made the post about, passed away today at his home surrounded by his family. (Yes, that was his real name.)

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@2744008

My friend, Rip VanWinkle, the person I made the post about, passed away today at his home surrounded by his family. (Yes, that was his real name.)

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@2750520

I agree. I'm both glad and sad that he went so quickly.

I'm sorry to hear this Jim. I have a 59 year old friend who was recently diagnosed with stage 4 glioblastoma (brain cancer). The prognosis is not good.

The first time I went to visit him we started talking about the disease. I said this it's very uncommon, isn't it. He told me 2-3 people out of 100,000 get it. There was a pause, and I was thinking things like WTF?!? This absolutely sucks.

It's as if he was reading my mind. He said something like, hey, lightning struck. That's the deal. Then he started taking about his treatment options. He's remaining very positive, though he too is doing things I consider "putting things in order". His attitude is helping others cope. It's amazing.

Yea, I like to think that I'm not afraid of dying. I think one of the hardest parts for me will be the feeling of helplessness with regards to my family. I will no longer be there for my wife and daughters.

I'm really happy to hear that his family will be taken care of. I would guess that provides him some comfort.

Wow, quite the tribute to this young man, Jim. Thank you for sharing with us.

I doubt I will face my death with dignified courage, for death scares me. Always has.

@dru18 Wow, quite the tribute to this young man, Jim. Thank you for sharing with us. I doubt I will face my death with...

My friend, Rip VanWinkle, the person I made the post about, passed away today at his home surrounded by his family. (Yes, that was his real name.)

I have no clue. People can try to imagine how they would be on such situation, but imagining it and living it are two different matters altogether. That man is worth respecting and admiring, no doubt.

Sofias avatar Sofia Agree +3Reply
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@2744063

Life deals tough cards some times. I guess it's going out with dignity, with few regrets that is the most many of us can hope for.

I just wanted to post that the person I talked about in this post, passed away today.

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