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Sweet Sam


Let's be clear, I am no master of grief. I don't claim to tip the iceberg on a subject so deep as grief.

I was asked once, “Are you of the opinion grief makes one stronger”?

My answer.

“No, no I don't believe that to be remotely true. Grief may make one numb, but no strength has ever been gained by placing that many holes in a heart.”

In fact, I am of the opinion some people find it hard to love again. The fear of hurting that way again simply because you loved someone so much over-rides your ability to open yourself up to love.

I was also asked, ”Do you think one could process grief with out anger”.

My response.

“I can tell you I have not worked through my own grief. I blame it solely on not being able to get mad about it. It's the one stage I cant make myself tackle. For what ever reason, I can't get mad about it. I want to experience the anger. So my answer is no, you can't work through grief without expressing anger”.

I was then asked, “Do you think everyone has the opportunity to walk through all five stages of grief”?

My mind immediately went to a cold December Sunday thirty years ago. It was the Sunday before Christmas and just ten days before Sam Floyd turned 17.

For those of you not around thrifty years ago and fortunate enough to know Sam, he was absolutely precious. Your all-american good looking brilliant high school kid. The kind that parents were proud to call theirs, sisters wouldn't trade for the world, teachers wanted in their class, baseball coaches wanted on his team, and all the girls well you could just imagine. Sams smile alone would have taken him very far in life and he knew just how to use it.

I suppose the thing that stand out more than anything was the fact, that Sam Floyd was simply a sweetheart to all. A precious person.

I was merely an acquaintance of Sams but it was the first time for many of us local teenagers to realize we are not invincible and bad things really can happen.

There was no social media to post on. No cellphones to text or call from, yet news of Sam and Brians wreck spread like wild fire on a windy day.

Sam was gone and would never be

I remember as a sister lying awake at night trying to figure out how Joanna would ever make it. How devastated and hurt she must be losing her big brother like that. It was just days before Christmas and Sams's birthday. The holidays would never be the same for that dear family.

I remember wondering how Sam's girlfriend and friends would ever balance the pain of his absence with being strong for their surviving friend, Brian. Forced to supress anger for good manners. And well they should have.

Brian passed away just 10 short years later after a battle with cancer. It's been said he grieved himself to death after losing Sam.

So one can ask me all the questions they want about grief. I have no answers, and my heart goes out to Sam's friends and family who have no doubt struggled with it the past thirty years.

More than anything I would like Sam's family and friends to know, thirty years may have passed, but Sam will never be forgotten. He was just that kind of guy.


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