After losing Mike in the beginning of the month, I thought we had seen the last of Death for awhile. I was wrong.
On Monday evening my cousin lost his two year battle with cancer. This cancer was in more than 5 places in his body and extremely aggressive. In the end he quietly went to sleep and his body CPU stopped sending messages such as "breathe" or walk
But this is not supposed to be a bemoaning of a lost soul. Rather, a celebration of his life.
Howard was one of the happiest men I knew. Every time I saw him, he was smiling or trying a new joke or acting somewhat exasperated - but never with out a large smile plastered across his face or a laugh beginning to bubble up to the surface and allow him to howl with laughter at something that struck him.
Howard was also a lover of nature. He worked for years at the Wilderness Center in this area of Ohio, raising money for the building and various programs that are included at the website for the wilderness center. He loved the Center almost as much as he loved the trees and nature herself. I can just imagine Howard getting ready for a camping trip. I know he was a very serious guy when it camping and the outdoors but he was also a photographer. So - what were essentials? Camera, film and inspiration. Those trees, the mountain vistas, the cool wooded paths, those were what cause the blood in his veins to pump. Those and his wonderful wife and beautiful daughters.
How do you say goodbye to someone who you feel you will see every tree? Perhaps my property is in fact a tribute ro him Perhaps the trees mean there really isn't one.
Thank you, Howard, You taught me a great deal about giving my time and my money when it is time to think about that. I hope to continue to know you through your daughtersl