Wednesday, June 3, 2009

10 year reunion

My ten-year high school reunion is coming up this summer (you don't have to remind me that I'm getting super old!!) Last weekend I was sitting around with family discussing just how old I'm getting - and how I was excited to see all my classmates at our reunion. This turned to talking about the classmate and cousin that left us WAY too soon - his laughter and smile will be missed so much at our 10 year reunion.

If I could say anything about Brian, it would be that he was so full of life. I've known Brian for as long as I can remember...we grew up going to the same church and we are cousins (even though it's far down the line:) We made our "acting" debut together around age 5 when we were shepards in our church's Christmas play. We were both Odon Bulldogs - I was the cheerleader and he played basketball. I clearly remember a birthday party he had at his house (one of our first boy/girl parties) where we played a game of softball, then played hide-and-seek at night with flashlights. Everything was fun with Brian - he made everyone laugh and was the life of the party. He was always being sooooo silly - teasing everyone or mooning us when we least expected it. What a hoot!

We moved on in school to North Daviess - where Brian met the love of his life - Jen. They dated all thru school - and were voted "cutest couple" of our senior class. I remember our senior trip (to Turkey Run, I think?) and Brian canoeing - we all hiked the trails and met up for lunch. That day will always shine very bright among my memories.

After high school Brian and Jen got married - one of those perfect love stories that everyone envied. No one would have imagined what happened next...how Brian was taken away from us doing something he loved so much. No one expected that the hunting trip on the day after Christmas would be Brian's last. My heart broke on that day for all the guys on that hunting trip, for Jen who had just become a widow at a VERY young age, for Brian's parents who lost their sweet son, for the ND Class of '99 who just lost a classmate that they all adored, and for my own loss of a childhood friend.

Gabe and I decided after this long, heart-wrenching talk about Brian, to go on a 4wheeler ride to the cemetery right by my mom and dad's house to visit Brian's grave. On our way there - the sky turned this amazing orange color with huge white clouds billowing upward...and as we looked up lightening began to strike. I absolutely love what Gabe said next: "Brian is putting on a show for us - showing off like usual:)" We both had a big laugh (which is what Brian would have wanted) and then headed to his grave. This was our view that evening:

We miss you like crazy, Brian - and we will continue to live life to the fullest every day in your honor. Love you!


16 comments:

Armes Family said...

Abby - Loved your post....LOVE that picture!!!! And most of all I love and miss Brian like crazy!!!!

Ashley said...

It always puts a pain in my stomach when someone so young is taken from us. I am glad that you went to the cemetary....and that picture is AMAZING!

Truelove at Last said...

What a beautiful photo!! Such an amazing story!

Leah Robinson said...

Amazing photo Abbie!! I only knew Brian for a short time through Joe and friends....but he had me rolling laughin the first time I met him! I cannot even imagine how hard he's making everyone laugh up there :) One of a kind that is for sure!

Jamie said...

Awesome picture Abbie! I love to hear stories about him.

Sandy said...

wow that picture of the orange cloud is captivating! Definately gave me chills. I agree, someone sure is putting on a show up there!

Oh and don't feel bad, my 10 year reunion is in July....YIKES!

sarah said...

Such an amazing post Abbie. Brian is missed by so many people and will always be remembered. He was an amazing classmate to all of us. Such an awesome picture also.

Jennifer said...

Abby what an awesome picture....Brian was such a great person....I loved spending all those nights at his house with Leslie....He was always doing something crazy....I don't think anyone made me laugh as much as he did though jr high and high school....I do think of the family and Jenn often....Thanks for posting about him...

Nicole Benjamin said...

Abby that picture is amazing! Brian was such an incredible person! He touched many lives and is greatly missed :( Jen is always in my prayers! She is such a wonderful and stronge woman! Thank you Abby for that amazing post!

Tera said...

Wow...that picture is awesome.

Ashley said...

Wow that's amazing. He sounds like he was pretty awesome :)

Boothbloggers said...

wow-if that picture doesn't bring tears to your eyes, nothing ever will! first of all, that was so tragic and horrible and i dont' think anyone who knew him could ever forget the intensity of that time. But this picture totally puts our short lives here and God's eternal life for us into perspective. Totally awe-inspiring picture-WOW, thank you for sharing it with us.

Anonymous said...

abbie,

that brought tears to my eyes. I remember all the funny quorky things brian did all through school. He will forever be in our hearts and never forgotten. this was truly beautiful...

mama2K said...

Hi Abbie,
Didn't know Brian, but my thoughts and prayers are still with Jen and all the friends who are still hurting. What an awesome picture...definetely the Lord sent that scene to you to minister to others! BTW- 20 years next year for me!hehehe
Lisa K.

Chelsa said...

amazing picture!

Susie said...

What an amazing picture to go with amazing memories of your friend.