Posts Tagged ‘downs syndrome’

Rob Dies

October 18, 2008

Rob is a long time friend. We go back twenty five years, and our families have often gone on camping holidays together. Six weeks ago we learned he was ill and the prognosis was not good. Today the news came of his death.

It takes a while for this kind of news to sink in. Rob was a kindly man with a personality that was soft on others. He engaged well and he affirmed everyone who came within his reach. Many people have been touched over the years by that engagement and affirmation. Such a person does not die away from our hearts easily.

He leaves a wife and three adult children. The youngest child, in his twenties, has Down Syndrome. He and Rob had a very special relationship and I am very sad for this particular son.

I gave the news to my wife and we shared the shock.

“He was our age,” she said.

“I guess we are getting to the age where people our age get sick and die,” I replied.

He was one year older than my wife and me. It’s still too young. There’s this thing about three score years and ten and he was many years within that horizon. And life expectancy is rising for our generation.

Sadly, life expectancy is not rising for the generation below us. The lifestyle of indulgence that surrounds young adults these days robs them of their years. The generation that includes Rob’s children will probably die at an even younger age than he.

Sadness today, and sadness tomorrow.

Farewell old friend. You have left much love behind, there is no greater legacy.