He would have been thirty-four today. And we'd probably be having one last family birthday dinner at the Bargerons on Jones Mill before the house sells. There would be lots of laughter and pointless, just-because chatter. We'd all simply be together, and that would be the best part. Any excuse to enjoy a good steak or a juicy burger lures our clan to wherever the food is being cooked, but today would be extra special. It would be usual in the sense that we'd all pick on his love of rare-cooked meat and chuckle at his witty comments that always seemed to bring about the most entertaining responses from Angie, but it would be unique in the sense that we would be able to pick on him a little more because he'd turned another year older. He would just laugh and tell us that we would catch up to him one day. That was our A-Dub, man of few words that frequently surprised you with the wisdom tucked behind them.
We may not have him here with us for this year's celebration, but there will, indeed, still be one. A big celebration with all the people who loved him most. We'll probably cry then laugh then cry some more all evening long, and that's okay because while his body may no longer be tangible, his spirit and our memories of him are. We may mourn because he's no longer with us, but we will forever be grateful that he lived. That we got to watch him live. That we've got so many memories we wouldn't trade for anything in this entire world.
Happy birthday, A-Dub!
You're still touching lives, and we're all trying real hard to keep that tradition alive in your honor.
As long as we live, you live.
"Find rest, O my soul, in God alone; my hope comes from him. He alone is my salvation, he is my fortress, I will not be shaken. My salvation and my honor depend on God; he is me mighty rock, my refuge. Trust in him at all times, O People; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.