A Mile in her Shoes

While we were in Florida this winter a special person passed away. We weren’t able to attend any ceremonies or comfort the widow and her children in person. All we could do was sit n shock. 60 is too young to die.

Chef Mick was a big part of our life and business starting in 1998. He came to us for an instructors position and never left. Until the day he died. He was a special person with a unique skill for working with students of all ages. They loved and respected him. It’s how he met his wife. They were meant to be and created a loving home for their kids and dogs. He was a family man through and through.

We share many fond memories. There are so many stories and situations that put a giant smile on my face. But today we smiled through our tears as we met his widow in person for the first time since his death in late April. We curse covid for bringing on such cruel restrictions and wreaking far more havoc on people with rules than the actual virus. What a shame.

As we sat and talked about the ordeal around his death all I could think about was being in her shoes. Waking up alone in bed. Smelling his clothing and seeing his face in every room. It’s hard not to wallow in the shear isolation. My own fear of being alone is overwhelmed in these scenes of love lost. How do you carry on without the love of your life and soul mate by your side? I told her I was in awe of her strength and resolve. Screw resolve. Give me my husband back.

They have two kids still in highschool. Life does go on. Others live through it and come out the other side. Why did this happen?? My range of emotion and thoughts is trying to find words of comfort. There aren’t any. It’s a shitty sad mess.

Her family wanted to be by her side. But they are internationally based and didn’t get the “compassionate permit” to travel until he was gone. She suffered alone and watched him dwindle to eternal rest. A small concession was the warp speed of his demise. Three weeks after being diagnosed he slipped away surrounded by his family. It’s a tragic end to their love story.

He leaves many legacies in addition to his children. Thousands of students and their families, coworkers and friends mourn his passing. He’s left a mark on so many lives. I wish the survivors all peace as they reflect on the memories.

My heart is heavy. Seeing her today has made it real. RIP Cheffie.

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