About a year and a half ago, when Ival and I took our last cruise, I got to meet up with an old friend from high school before we left our port in Florida. I hadn't seen Rick Dewey since 1974 when I graduated. He was a year behind me in school, but with only about 50 kids in the whole high school, we were all good friends.
They lived up at Terrace Lakes. Rick had this boyish smile that always made you want to ask him what he was thinking. I was happy to see that he still had that smile when we met up with him 36 years later. It was almost like we had never missed a day of seeing each other. The visit was easy and it was so nice to catch up. What made me the happiest though, was how obvious it was that he loved his wife and how happy they were together. He told us how he was estranged from his family, and that made me sad. He had an older brother that drowned a few years after I graduated, but his father and a few siblings were still alive. I didn't ask why, but not being close to his family was obviously very hard on him.
I got on Facebook the other morning and started reading all the new posts. There was a status update on his page from his wife saying how sorry she was for his friends and family, but Rick had died the day before. My brain went numb. Rick was a contractor and I thought maybe he had been killed in an accident. I sent a message to his wife and told her how incredibly sorry I was because I knew how much they loved each other. She sent me a message back telling me that Rick had killed himself.
I still can't believe it. I hate suicide. My first husband did the same thing 34 years ago. I just don't understand how people can do that to all the people that love them. He seemed so happy, yet sometimes there can be pain so deep that you get very good at hiding it after having it for so long. I'll never know what caused him to do it, but I'll certainly miss keeping up with him.
My hope for Eileen is that she can someday find peace, keep the wonderful memories, and always know how much Rick loved her.
I'm going to miss you friend. Happy Trails...