I went to school with Steve five days a week, where he’d slam shut my locker, next to his, before I had my last books out. Or slam it and spin my lock so I’d have to start all over. He relished teasing me, but he’d also call me on the phone often, even decades later when he graduated boot camp, and I was laid up recuperating from surgery for cancer.
We went to church together every Wednesday night and twice on Sunday, where he insisted on calling me Sarah for a year and would take one of my shoes, which I kicked off too often in Sunday School, and put them in the boys’ bathroom for me to retrieve.
I moved away in junior high. I saw him every time I visited, and wondered often how our friendship would have matured and changed, if I had remained close geographically. But despite our physical distance, he was always my friend, and I was devastated when he died.
I think of him often. My girlfriends and I dedicate our annual women’s weekend to him every year (just had our 23rd). Every time I think of him it makes me smile or laugh. Every story we tell is one of fond and fun remembrances. I think that is a legacy he’d be tickled by and proud of.
Thank you Steve for your sacrifice. I love and miss you.