June 12, 2011

For Jimmy R

Earlier this year, probably in the March timeframe, I received a request for several of our FLHW silicon bracelets. Through a series of emails I discovered I was sending these to the sister of a man my age, also battling advanced prostate cancer.

Last week I received an email update from her that Jimmy had passed. There are many reasons this news upsets me, but the part that hurts me the most is the fact that he left a wife and three teenage children.

Are you starting to hate this disease as much as I do?

Jimmy’s sister told me that as an educator he was known to provide students a “Golden Starfish” pin. She sent one to me and below is the poem that accompanies each pin.

The Starfish Story
While walking along a beach, an elderly gentleman saw someone in the distance leaning down, picking something up and throwing it back into the ocean.

As he got closer, he noticed that the figure was that of a young man, picking up starfish one by one and tossing each one gently back into the water.

The old man smiled, and said, "I must ask, then, why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?"

To this, the young man replied, "The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don't throw them in, they'll die."

Upon hearing this, the elderly observer commented, "But young man, do you not realize that there are miles and miles of beach and there are starfish all along every mile? You can't possibly make a difference!"

The young man listened politely. Then he bent down, picked up another starfish, threw it back into the ocean past the breaking waves and said, "It made a difference for that one."

Bless you Kathy and Jimmy’s entire extended family.


Brian - Prostate Cancer IV said...

While it is great that technology allows us all to keep up with each other, it is a stark reminder that the numbers behind the statistics with this disease are us. My best to Kathy and Jimmy's family. And thank you David for bringing this to us. You have restored many starfish to the sea, yourself.

Anonymous said...

The starfish story is touching and meaningful in so many ways. Thanks for sharing. God Bless.