Kevin's Last Day

On July 14th, 2002 our friend Kevin had a heart attack and passed away in the middle of a men's league ice hockey game being played in St. Louis. This is the story of that sad event and the never ending search to find some meaning in it.

The Story

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We met at the golf course at 5:30 in the afternoon.  John and Shawn work there, and Nick too but he was just along to watch.  That left enough time to wait for those who were always late, figure out who was driving, and get to Wentzville in time to dress for the game.  Kevin drove with Todd.

This was the third straight game we had played against this team.  Lost one, won one, and now it was the playoffs.  It seemed a little unfair because the other team had secured a different goaltender, one who, rumor had it, had played for the St. Louis Blues.  Hmmm… as one goalie and an ex-pro as the other.  Seemed somehow not quite even.  At the end of the first period we were down 1-0.  I let in a goal that I shouldn’t have and the other goalie stopped many shots he shouldn’t have.  Read more

Finding Meaning: Would You Want to Know?

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One of my colleagues at MU taught a class on medical ethics.  He asked his students if they would like to know when they are going to die. Would you? If I could tell you right now exactly when you would die, would you want to know?  Would it affect how you lived your life?  It turns out that most people don’t want to know when their time will be up.  Rather than being able to plan for it, to get things in order, to use the time most judiciously, or most delightfully, they would feel overwhelmed.  They would never be able to get it out of their mind.  Never escape the presence of death.  Others, of ocurse, want to know.  They want to be able to plan.  They feel that, if they knew, they could make good choices about how to spend their time.  If I just have two hours to go, I’d rather Read more