Have you ever counted how many people you've known in your life who are now passed? It's that one ride we all take - hopefully to something more and better...
And the older you get, the higher the number.
I remember the first - Jerry Sullivan - they announced his death at mass... he was a grade school chum who had been shot and killed in Viet Nam. I remember him as a cheerful boy.
One Christmas we got the usual card, not from Jim Brown, a former high school buddy, but from his wife, with details on his passing (in his 40s, as I recall.) He was blessed with a genius IQ and many other outstanding abilities. We had only been in touch via Christmas card over the years.
The years do separate us, as did my radio journey across the US and Canada.
My old college business partner Art Constantine was killed on his motorcycle as was his wife, and his brother Robbie died many years before from a botched hospital stay.
Not including family, I count 11.