The Death of My Friend
It all started around May 2000. I will never forget the terror and shock on my sister’s face when she told us the news. My brother-in-law Dan had been in an accident at work. He fell and broke his left leg. As soon as the doctors finished the MRI and found the tumor they knew that it was cancer. After the surgery to repair the bone in his hip, the cancer raged throughout his body.
Dan and I had always had a very special relationship. He was like the father that I never had. I was always included. From camping trips, to fishing, and four wheel riding, I was there. He loved me like his own, and I will never forget him. He was at my graduation and my wedding, when my own father was not. Dan was the kind of person that everybody liked. I adored him. He was my dad in every way. The doctor told us he had approximately one year to live. What do you do when you get that kind of news? We prayed.
He was started on chemotherapy and radiation immediately. The cancer was very aggressive. It started to spread. The cancer went to the hip first, to the kidneys, and on to the lymph nodes. The chemo made him very sick and he could not eat. The man that I loved was wasting away. He had turned into a shell of the man that I once knew. I hated to see him this way. He was in and out of the hospital several times.
Dan had told us that he did not want to die at home, because he knew that his family would never be able to live there. He told us that he had lived a good life, and had lots of memories that he held dear to his heart. He was getting weaker and weaker. This would be the last time that he went to the hospital. He would not be coming back home with us. The doctors told us that his body was shutting down, and all that they could do was to make him comfortable. How hard must it be to know that you are going to die, and there is nothing that you can do about it? He was leaving behind a wife and three children, good friends,...