Friendships – and the fragility of life

My last post was a letter to our grandson, who was killed in a car accident when he was five. He was hit by a man who was speeding and talking on his cell phone. Driving distracted is now prohibited in many places.

Today, I found out that a friend of ours passed away last week. Bill Bennett was a good pilot and a good person. He and his wife, Caroline, lived in Newnan and later moved to Lake Oconee. Bill and I had flown for the same air freight carrier, and then I interviewed him and recommended him to Netjets. He and Bob flew together. Both of us have fond memories of Bill, and we were invited to his retirement party.

Bill’s wife, Caroline, is a twin. Her twin sister is a friend of ours, but I didn’t know that until I saw the post on Facebook that Bill had died. He had apparently been battling lung cancer for several years but his death was unexpected. The last time we saw Bill and Caroline was at Bill’s retirement party at Candler Field. Since the party, we’ve often wondered how Bill and Caroline were doing. It turns out that Caroline has Alzheimer’s and is in a personal care home.

Life is short. It is too short and too fragile to be stupid. Last year, I loaned our truck to a friend who drank too much and had an accident. She hasn’t spoken to me since. Not even an apology. It doesn’t matter. Life is too short to stay angry. I wish her nothing but the best.

Don’t let your last words to someone be bitter or angry. Be kind. Be thoughtful. Help someone. Hug someone. Do something nice for someone. Random acts of kindness feel good, and will help you build a legacy of love.

If you have a friend who is on your mind, pick up the phone. You never know when it is too late.

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