Archive for May 12th, 2014
I was saddened today to hear that an old buddy of mine passed away this weekend. His name was Josh and he was about the nicest guy you could meet. I first met him back at summer camp in the mid-nineties. Back then we were both members of an exclusive club, the long-hair-alternative-weirdo-kids club. All teenage guys with long hair were just assumed to be friends back in those days. After summer camp, we saw each other at the same college parties in Springfield back in my SMSU days. Josh went to the same high school as my roommate Eric, and seemed to know a good half of my friends during my college days.
Although I never knew him well, he was always around and always a fun guy to run into in public since we knew so many of the same folks. Through the magic of Facebook we were able to reconnect slowly over the past few years. Our communication was mostly through comments on each other’s postings, similar to a good chunk of my Facebook friends. According to his Wall, Josh was a very active dude that did a lot of cool stuff.
I hadn’t seen Josh in several years, and yet today when I heard the news I immediately remembered the last time I saw him. After watching Chris Carpenter win Game 1 of the 2011 World Series, I saw Josh in a mass of people as we left Busch Stadium. It was only for a moment as we were passing by each other in a joyous swell of Cardinals fans cheering. We made eye contact and immediately both signaled for a high five. The high hand slap was followed by a cheer of “Cardinals!” and then we both continued on our way. Two ecstatic guys full of beer and cheer.
That wonderful memory really encapsulates what I respected about Josh. He was a true believer like me, the kind of guy that would drop several hundo to go watch a game by himself. Spending top dollar to go solo to a huge event takes a real fan, and Josh was the realest. In his honor I went to the MLB website and found the panaoramic photo of Game 1 from 2011 so I could post a photo here. Through the magic of Facebook yet again I was able to find Josh. Here’s is Josh enjoying the first and only World Series Game 1 to be played in St. Louis since 1982.
Game 1 was already a very special day for me, and now it has grown exponentially more cherished. Game 1 is how I will remember him, smiling in a seat cheering on his team. Rest in Peace.