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Thursday, October 22, 2009
Celebrating A Heart of Gold
I have a heavy heart today. John Scully, one of my oldest and dearest friends died yesterday from complications of the heart and lungs due to emphysema. John was only 50 years old.
I first met John when I was 15 and learning how to drive. Mom would take me up to the mall after close to practice. Then we’d go to Dunkin Donuts to talk bout what I did, or more often didn’t, do right. At that time, John was 22 and working the evening shift at the donut shop. He was a sweet and friendly man who just clicked with both Mom and me. He always had a warm smile and a good laugh to share with everyone and he was never afraid to poke fun at me! I admired that because generally my friends seldom did that at that time.
As I’ve said before, I met all three of my closest and oldest friends at D&D. As friends from school met John, he became part of the group my Mom named “The Zoo.” Years after high school as many friends went their separate ways, John and Scott, who I did not go to school with, remained and our family of friends grew.
Having met when we were 15 and 22, our relationship was always that of a big brother-little sister. He always looked out for me, talked me out of making dumb mistakes and sometimes talked me into making the better choice. He was also the first one to check yes when I asked everyone about an evening or weekend out. Through the years we did so many fun things together. He and I went to my first national league baseball game together in 1991. That was on a trip to Atlanta when I had a job interview with a railroad video company. He wanted to go together just ion case I ended up moving to Atlanta and we didn't get to see each other as much. He was also one of the great idea-men in making costumes for our many wrestling fan events in the late 80s, even playing Virgil to my Tedi DiBiasse!
John was one of the first people to tell me that qualifying for Mensa was “No big deal,” to him and it didn’t surprise him. We met when I was seriously in my teenage inferiority complex and he was one of the first to tell me that the only stupid thing I ever said was that I was stupid. He played an instrumental part with Mom in getting me over that.
He was an incredibly generous man to everyone he loved. He was the first one to offer to drive when we went on trips and he never accepted gas money, even when we were all younger and poorer!
In 2004, when I made my tongue-in-cheek run for the White House, he was my running mate. Some of his social ideas were even more liberal than mine, although we both maintained fiscally conservative ideas. He was so much fun to have as a partner in our faux-political race.
In 2006, he and Sheri did all the planning for my 40th birthday celebration, including that it was John who bought all of the tickets for the baseball game a week later where the section was filled with my friends from Michigan and Missouri that came in a few at a time at the game I thought I only had two tickets for!
He was always there for the fun events in my world, but equally there to ease my burdens during the rough times.
When Mom died, it was hard on all of us. My close core of friends, the Zoo, enjoyed times with Mom as the “den mother.” When I, the one who usually does the planning, was just too emotionally involved to function as an organizer, John took over, gathering information for flowers, time for us all to be together to support each other and just spending lots of time making sure I was okay. During that time, along with Scott and Kelly, he held me up.
There are so many wonderful things I can tell about this incredible man who was a fixture in my life for almost three decades, more than half of both of our lives. There is an empty spot in my heart just now, but the world of wonderful memories will eventually fill it and the pain of losing him will be replaced with the reminders of the better person I am for the part of him he left on my heart forever.
I love you and miss you, John. Thank you for everything.