i just wanted to get this out of my system...
a good buddy of mine died saturday afternoon, at the lake. he dove off of his boat into water that was too shallow, and broke his neck. i was not there, but i should have been. i am a lifeguard, and i keep thinking that maybe i could have done somehting about it. anyway, he broke his neck and drowned. there were three others with him, and they cpr'ed all the way to the landing, but there was nothing they could do.
this is such a tragedy because this guy had just graduated high school in may, and had such a bright future ahead of him. he had a full paid scholarship to Auburn University in civil engineering (i had been trying for months last fall to get him to come to tuscaloosa--i'll be a sophmore there this fall) and was so full of life, and so independent.
he is the guy that got me into mountain biking-- he was a mountain biker (rode a c-dale f500), a runner (ran the country music marathon in tennessee in april--26 miles, and won 4th in his age division), and had just bought a specialized allez road bike two weeks ago--he only got to ride it once. he told me he wanted to ride it across the country. he would have done it, too. but he only put 26 miles on it, the morning before he died. his mom told me that yesterday afternoon while i was at his house.
i am going to be a pall bearer at his funeral in the morning. life is tough, you know? such a waste. anyway, i just wanted to write this down, and let everyone know that cycling has lost a great guy, and that he will be missed by everyone who knew him.
so, in memory of neil, go on a ride tomorrow, or the next time you go, take that hill in front you as fast as you can...he always said that hills were his favorite. he would say that while he sprinted up and i huffed and puffed behind him. i would knowingly ask why, and just as he would crest the hill he would holler back at me (he was always in the lead--you couldn't hold him back) "because you get to go down the other side man!!"
thanks for reading. oh yeah, there is a poem i wrote attached that i also wanted to share. excuse the formatting...word and editpad don't mix too well.
and remember the hills, for neil.