Yesterday, I lost another co-worker. The second in the past month. But this one wasn’t just someone I worked with. He was a friend.
He helped me learn my job when I first started. I came to an electronics line without the slightest bit of education in the subject. While some were scoffing at that fact, Eric was there to help whenever I needed it without a moment’s hesitation.
He enjoyed his pranks. We liked to catch two people together and yell across the shop “BROTHERS DON’T DISCUSS BUSINESS, BROTHERS GOTTA HUG!!” (For those who know the movie ‘Tommy Boy’, you get that reference). He had his favorites to pick on (as do all of us) and he enjoyed laughing… a lot!
He got into photography, learning what he could from professionals that sat with him. He was more than happy to pass along some of that knowledge to me. I was able to bounce ideas or problems off of him and received an honest answer. Not one filled with half truths or sabotage. He was the closest thing to a mentor I’ve ever had.
He spoke with great pride about his Wife and Daughter to me. He started turning away photography business because it was taking away too much time from his family. They always came first. And he wouldn’t have had it any other way. At my busiest times, he would have a story about family and it would keep me focused on what was important in those times. We always joked about our daughters and the song “Cat’s in the Cradle”.
My Wife and I hired him to take our wedding photos last April. He was more than happy to do it and went above and beyond the call of duty performing extra Photoshop tricks and getting us a DVD of the photos within five days of taking them. (Several were emailed to us that night!)
I know this post is a whole lot of rambling. I guess I am still trying to wrap my head around it all.
He was the man you wanted to have as a friend. A man that you’d want in your corner. A man you could truly look up to.
Rest In Peace, my friend. We are all better for knowing you.