May 19, 2005

Thoughts on Death and Camp

As I noted earlier, one of my friends from the camp I worked at for four summers passed away last Friday.  Mason and I went to his calling hours on Tuesday.  It was hard.  It was in the same funeral home with the same family lined-up that his father had been in just two years prior.  What do you say to the family waiting near the casket?  How can you possibly show how moved and saddened you are by their loss?  I couldn't find words and stammered through to mingle with fellow former staffers for the next two hours.

Then, we headed to camp--about 15 of us total.  There we remembered our fallen brother.  The whole experience had an odd quality of a family reunion.  It was depressing and yet somehow not too unlike old days at camp.  We talked for several more hours catching up on everyone's lives and generally mourning the loss of a sibling in our camp family.

Mason was right when he explained how family like the camp staff really was.  We all have been through many experiences in our lives together--closer at times that I have been with my real aunts and cousins.  That is why I enjoyed camp so much, and still enjoy the people involved with it.  They are some of the people I have been closest to in my life and feel like they really will always be a family I can turn to and count on being there.

In the end, it was a fitting tribute to the life of Jeremy Dailey.  He was an amazing individual part of this family.  I will truly miss him and keep his memory near into the future.