Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Adios, Amigo

I really couldn't think of how to start this post. I started to write it and then decided not to, but, I can't let this go by without acknowledging the passing of my dear friend, John Wiggs.

I remember as a pre-teen my grandmother saying to me one day, "The worst thing about getting old is losing your friends". I thought of that on Monday when I received the call from John's son. Over the last few years I've lost good friends but my friendship with John was long-standing, thirty-two years. He truly had become family to all of us.

People cross your path in life that are stellar. John was that. A man of higher integrity I have never met. His intellect and sense of humor always amazed me. And, he had become that "Rock of Gibraltar" that comes along seldom in one's life. I always knew if I had my back up against the wall, I could call John. No more.

And call him I did over the years - when Jessica (my granddaughter) had her toe severed. He came and waited with us as her toe was reattached. He came when Jennifer was ill with leukemia and needed transfusions. He was there when sitters were needed in pediatric intensive care to sit with little Christopher. Always there. Always.

In case you think this was a one-sided friendship, not. I was there when he had his heart attack almost sixteen years ago. He was at a regional hospital. I knew he would die if he stayed there. I threw a hissy fit (seldom happens but when it does, it's effective). The end result was he was moved to the Heart Institute in Houston at St. Luke's. He said many times that I saved his life and I would just smile.

He remarried to his high school sweetheart who he sought out and found. I was matron of honor for the wedding. Such intertwined lives.

Luckily I saw him on June 8th just before I returned to San Miguel. He was having some heart issues and had just gotten out of the hospital. We spent a couple of hours catching up. He was going back into the hospital for a new pacemaker. I had the awful feeling during the time we were together that I might not ever see him again. I'm so, so happy we had that time to talk about things.

I have spent many hours since Monday reminiscing about all the crazy, fun, silly, serious and loving things we did for each other. There is no way on earth that I will ever have a good male friend like that again in this lifetime.

Adios John.


Steve Cotton said...

Only a good friend could write such a touching piece. Thank you for sharing it -- along with the reminder that we need to tend our friendships. They are priceless.

ccinha said...

Ditto on Steve's comment. Our friends are priceless.

Tina said...

How fortunate you were to have such a beautiful friendship. I'm very sorry for your loss.