My wife and I went to a viewing tonight for the son of one of my colleagues.
I didn’t know the young man but based on his obituary and the line of people at the viewing, he was loved by many and had a significant impact on many in his way too short 28 years.
The viewing was scheduled to be from 6:00-8:00 pm. We got there at 7:30 and didn’t offer our condolences to the family until 11:00.
Here is an excerpt from his obituary that gives you some sense of this amazing young man.
“… worked as a critical care nurse. Those that worked with him will remember him as a compassionate caregiver, a person dedicated to others’ health and well-being.
He served as a president of a local University’s chapter of SRPHUP (Student Run Emergency Housing Unit of Philadelphia) for three years, providing meals and shelter to those experiencing homelessness in Philadelphia, a passion that followed him to do volunteer work with PROJECT HOME after graduation.
He had eclectic interests, a wide palate, and a penchant for travel, making trips to Europe, Canada, and several national parks in recent years with his best friends, of which he had countless. He loved to run, enjoyed the breadth of Philly’s restaurant scene, and supported Philly’s sports teams through thick and thin (and it would often get very thin.) His family and friends experienced a profound empathy when in his presence through his ability to listen to others’ and show up with support and love in times of great need. He had an uncanny ability to connect, to make others feel special, safe, and understood. His love was pure, his heart gravitational, pulling those around him into his orbit and inspiring them to live lives of vulnerability, justice, and kindness. His life serves as a testament not just how much he loved, but rather how much he was loved by others.”
A beautiful tribute to the young man, and I offer my thoughts and prayers to his family during this difficult time.