"My Brother Mark and Me" by nakedpastor David Hayward
My dear friends and readers‚
It's with great sadness I announce the death of my dear brother Mark. I'm the oldest of 5 kids and he was the second. He was 57 years old.
When my family (me, Lisa and our 3 kids) took a vacation to Costa Rica, we took a 3 day layover in Toronto where I got to see my family. Mark has been estranged from the family for most of his life. I worked hard to maintain a relationship with him, and most of the time it was very difficult and sometimes impossible. But, gratefully, I insisted this time and we arranged a brief visit over beer and wings at a local bar in his town. Out of the 100 flavors, we chose Buffalo. They were delicious. We ordered enough for him to take home leftovers. This was just 7 days ago. I snapped this photo of us together before we parted.¬†Forever.
We talked and laughed together. We shared our struggles and joys. Although his joy was running out. He was obviously going through a very difficult time. That's more obvious to us all now.
Because I just found out that he took his own life shortly after that visit.
He was a very independent, non-conformist type of person. From the beginning. He lived totally off the grid with zero commitments. I guess it finally caught up with him and he felt he had no more hope of a future. I don't really know. That's just my guess. He left no note.
Our last correspondence is on my iPhone. Us texting back and forth. Me trying to convince him to meet me. Him finally relenting. Us agreeing on a place and time. Me promising to come alone with no surprises. We had three hours together. I gave him a little money for groceries and stuff. He said he was going to the Beer Store.
His last words to me were, "Well, at least I'm going to have a good night tonight. Thanks to you. Love you brother!"
Now he's gone.
This is hard. I'm going to miss him. I flew out early Friday morning to be with the family and help out. It's weird. Today I'm going to view the body alone. The coroner doesn't recommend it but I feel I must. I'm bracing myself for an unpleasant viewing.
So, I'm taking a few days break from my usually intense internet activity‚ although I'm sure I'll be popping in now and then because, alas, this is where my friends are. Please forgive me for being less present. I know you understand.
Thanks for your thoughts. Thanks for your support.
Peace on your path!