This morning was very special. Very early this morning as the sun popped up over the horizon we all celebrated one of my oldest son's best friends. As you recall he was killed in a car accident in California on February 13, of this year. It has been a terrible blow for the family and friends left behind. He was one of this special group of boys, the four of them did everything together through high school. Although they went to different colleges and swam for different teams they were closer than close.
Today, after many, many delays due to the current pandemic the ceremony was finally performed. While some of us waited on the beach (Mr 23 came with me to honor a young man he grew up with at our house all the time), many people paddled out to the water, each holding a rose. They gradually got into a circle and after a moment of silence, Thomas' Dad said some words, then they threw their roses into the center of the circle. As his ashes were placed in the water everyone splashed and splashed. It was really beautiful and very touching. And coincidentally, after all the many delays the ceremony ended up being on Thomas' birthday. This was the other half to the ash ceremony that was in California right after he passed. This was also attended by Mr 26 and his two friends who flew out after just a few days of even getting used to this. They spent over 36 hours traveling just to be there to honor their friend.
After the ceremony this morning there was a one mile swim in honor of Thomas. The three boys, while excellent swimmers had not swum for a long time. Still they made it and actually did very well. They were all pretty tired afterward, the water temps are very warm and so is the air. It was beautiful for us standing on the beach but maybe not so much for those swimming. There will be a yearly swim in February to honor Thomas.
We saw people we have not seen in years, young people coming to honor their friend. People like me who were not able to make it to California for the other end of this service. It really was a beautiful tribute to a really wonderful young man who will be sorely missed the rest of our lives.
I am blessed Mr 26 has been close by to offer support to this wonderful family. He has gone to workout with the father a few times, helped move things in the garage, painted, picked up a shed they needed from the store. Whatever the reason he has connected with these wonderful parents who need to see a young man that reminds them of their son. Someone they can hug and hold onto even if it is only for a brief moment.
And as much as this contact helps them it helps my son. To know he is there for this family is a way to honor the wonderful friendship he had with Thomas and will always have in his heart.
Hugs your kids my friends, things change fast. Stay safe.