About a month ago, Matt's godfather, Gary, passed away. It was incredibly sad to lose someone like him, not just because we adored him or because we know that we'll never see him again or hear him tell jokes or receive emails from him with scanned comic strips and random words in all capitals, but because without him, the world is just not as good. I'm hesitant to even write this because I know that there aren't words to accurately convey just how awesome Gary was.
Gary didn't want a funeral, so this past weekend we headed down to Ft. Lauderdale to attend his celebration of life party. During this party, people from Gary's life spoke about him, about his sense of adventure, selflessness, and his incredible passion for helping others. As the host would list Gary's accomplishments (which, by the way, earned him recognition from the U.S. Congress and countless other agencies), I began to wonder how one guy could possibly do so much. Gary never mentioned all of his volunteer efforts or the funds he set up for different causes when we were hanging out with him eating brownies. In fact, during those times, he seemed primarily concerned with us, with what was going on in our lives, with our jobs, our families.
He was mischievous, kind, cheap, ambitious, humble, and generous. He was a lover of baked goods and a packrat and a genius. Gary dedicated his life to making other people's lives better, and I've never known anyone who was a better citizen than he was.
And now, knowing all that Gary did and how many people he helped, I feel like a complete lazy do-nothing.
We're really going to miss Gary, and need to get moving if we're going to be even 1/10 as amazing as he was.