And suddenly it was over

The phone call came at about ten.

The last time I saw him, he was pretty much out of it; he didn’t so much as flinch when I barked out the command to drop and give me twenty.

But dammit, he was still breathing.

I pass along to you the advice he passed along to me yesterday, the words of the Welshman, words you already know, but words he took to heart:

Do not go gentle into that good night,
Old age should burn and rave at close of day;
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Though wise men at their end know dark is right,
Because their words had forked no lightning they
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright
Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

Wild men who caught and sang the sun in flight,
And learn, too late, they grieved it on its way,
Do not go gentle into that good night.

Grave men, near death, who see with blinding sight
Blind eyes could blaze like meteors and be gay,
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

And you, my father, there on the sad height,
Curse, bless, me now with your fierce tears, I pray.
Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.

His last act, I must report, qualified as “rage, rage”: he ripped the mouthpiece off the ventilator. (Not fixable.) This is how I know I’ll miss him: he always walked the walk.

Paul Dudley Hill
31 October 1957 — 13 October 2010
Requiescat in pace

27 comments

  1. Mel »

    13 October 2010 · 11:16 pm

    You and your family are in my thoughts.

  2. Teresa »

    13 October 2010 · 11:21 pm

    My condolences and prayers for you and your family. I’m so sorry.

  3. Tim »

    13 October 2010 · 11:26 pm

    You and your family are in our prayers. God bless.

  4. Kevin McGehee »

    13 October 2010 · 11:27 pm

    Damn. He was only two months older than my brother.

    I think I need to send my brother a “just because” card tomorrow.

  5. Guy S »

    13 October 2010 · 11:56 pm

    You and your family are in Debbie’s and my thoughts.

  6. Dan Lovejoy »

    14 October 2010 · 12:49 am

    Charles, I’m so sorry.

  7. Jim - PRS »

    14 October 2010 · 1:26 am

    Condolences…….

  8. Jeff Brokaw »

    14 October 2010 · 7:09 am

    My condolences to you and your family, Chaz.

  9. fillyjonk »

    14 October 2010 · 7:23 am

    I’m so sorry. My condolences to you and yours.

  10. Joan of Argghh! »

    14 October 2010 · 7:27 am

    There is never enough time to love them as they deserve; that’s likely what Heaven is really for: an eternity to love whom we have missed. I am so sorry, Charles.

  11. Marcel »

    14 October 2010 · 7:39 am

    Sounds like quite a guy. God bless.

  12. Brian J. »

    14 October 2010 · 8:55 am

    I am sorry for your loss. One part of the whole world is gone.

  13. Jan »

    14 October 2010 · 9:27 am

    Condolences, Charles.

  14. Andrea Harris »

    14 October 2010 · 9:42 am

    My condolences.

  15. sya »

    14 October 2010 · 10:14 am

    My condolences to you and your family.

  16. Tatyana »

    14 October 2010 · 10:41 am

    My sympathy to you and your brother’s family

    He was so young to go

  17. Tom »

    14 October 2010 · 11:50 am

    I’m sorry for your loss, and wish you all the best as you move forward.

  18. Don Mecoy »

    14 October 2010 · 12:10 pm

    I’m sorry for your loss.

  19. Vickie »

    14 October 2010 · 4:55 pm

    As always, my heartfelt thoughts to you.

  20. KingShamus »

    14 October 2010 · 5:15 pm

    Thoughts and prayers go out to you and yours, CG.

  21. Jeffro »

    14 October 2010 · 6:00 pm

    You and your family have my deepest condolences, Chaz. He was not quite two years older than me – he went far too soon.

    I think I’ve got a bit of rage, rage against the dying of the light right now.

  22. jenn1964 »

    14 October 2010 · 7:58 pm

    My condolences on your loss.

  23. ms7168 »

    15 October 2010 · 8:41 am

    I’m sorry for your loss Charles. And that I did not read about it until this morning :(

  24. Bill Peschel »

    15 October 2010 · 10:02 am

    Please accept my condolences. There is never enough time to spend with the ones we love. Fortunately, the love we hold can last a lifetime.

  25. Donna »

    15 October 2010 · 8:10 pm

    I am so sorry Charles! You are in my thoughts and prayers.

  26. Ted »

    16 October 2010 · 11:28 am

    My condolences.

  27. Lisa Paul »

    17 October 2010 · 11:09 am

    I’ve been away from the Internet and missed this. My thoughts and condolences to you and your family. But what a great exit…

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