Monday, 11 October 2021

My Brother, Neil

 My brother passed away on Saturday night. He was diagnosed with neuroendocrine cancer almost five years ago. When he was diagnosed, we had no idea how long he would be able to live with the disease. We are grateful we got as many years together as we did. He did a lot of living in those years, traveling to many interesting places. 

This week, he started to feel worse than usual. No matter how much pain medication they gave him, it didn't seem to help. By Friday, he was unresponsive and he passed away Saturday at 7:30 pm. Our hearts are broken.

"End? No, the journey doesn't end here. Death is just another path, one that we all must take. The grey rain-curtain of this world rolls back, and all turns to silver glass, and then you see it."

—J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King

Lessons my brother taught me:
It's never too late to find love.
Life is better with good friends.
Always be positive. Happiness is a choice.
Winning is fun.
You can't hit a homerun if you don't swing...and work on your form. Homeruns are more fun than singles. Besides, you don't have to run so hard.
Go for the double play.
When things are coming at you fast, choke up on the bat.
There's always the next game.
Be a team player.
There's something to appreciate about every part of the world.
If you get a chance, go!
There's no need to be too serious.
Just because someone says you are sick doesn't mean you have to quit.

My brother was a courageous fighter and an all round great guy. Everyone liked Neil. I can't even express how much he will be missed. On October 9, he hit is last figurative home run and rounded the bases jubilantly, all on his own. I only wish I could have seen the high fives on the other side.

This is how I will always remember him. In this picture, he is in the Czech Republic at the World Junior Hockey Tournament 2020. Canada beat Russia in the final game. He was thrilled to be able to be there. This is how I will always remember him:

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