Today, I am attending a memorial service for one of nicest gentleman I believe that I have ever met. As I mentioned before, I work for a membership organization that supports elected and appointed municipal officials. In my work, I have the honor and privilege to work with many awesome municipal officials. These officials pour their hearts out to serve the citizens of their communities.
Last Wednesday, the life of those municipal officials dramatically changed....
The Immediate Past President of my organization and I spoke during the early afternoon on Wednesday. We exchanged pleasantries, and then discussed a recent discussion with their family doctor regarding considering moving into a one-story home. I was able to tell him about some of the house plans that my parents had been looking at, etc. We talked for about 20 minutes - not terribly unusual for our frequent conversations.
That evening, this gentleman was taking 2 bags of garbage from the main floor of his home down to the basement. He missed one step and fell. He sustained a significant head injury during the fall. When he arrived at the hospital, he was immediately taken into surgery in an effort to stave off additional swelling of his brain. He survived surgery, but the fall was too much and the brain damage was just too great. He passed away early Monday morning - entirely too early for a man with such a great heart and love for others.
I will never forget this uncanny sense of humor - it was sometimes quite wicked. One of my favorite things to hear my boss say about Chris involved a "confrontation" at our General Assembly. After being addressed rather unkindly and unnecessarily, Chris turned to my boss and said “I have the highest amount of low regard for that guy.” He was proud of his service to the Village of Clemmons, and often said when he was introducing himself to elected officials from other cities and states that he was “from D.C.—downtown Clemmons.”
I know that things will be fine, but this loss makes you think... My parents live in a 2-story home and are not that much younger. The bedrooms in their home are upstairs so they go up and down the stairs multiple times a day. This could have easily been one of my parents. I cannot imagine.
While I will miss Chris at future Board of Directors meetings, annual conference, Town Hall Day and other events, he will be there in spirit. I will always remember his kind, congenial nature and sense of humor. I will do my best to embody his demeanor daily.