Wednesday, September 29, 2010

See you on the other side Joe.

This is about my childhood friend, Joe Moos. He passed away on Sunday, September 26th 2010.
Well Joe, you certainly messed up our plans to establish a retirement home for crotchety old Carter-Riverside guys. We won't be able to sit out on the porch, wave our canes in the air and yell at the kids to get off our lawn. I was looking forward to that. You lived a long life in your 46 years, much longer than others your same age.

I don't know why but I clearly remember when I first met you. You were about 4 years old when I rode my bicycle passed your house on my way to Tootsie Hartsells house to play with Rena and Glenda. You chased me down the sidewalk and yelled at me to get away from your house. I guess you thought I was a menacing, 6 year old threat.

We became friends over the years, You, Me, Gary Foster and Michael Trevino. Our summer days were spent riding our bikes through the creek, skateboarding all over the neighborhood, playing hide and go seek in the cemetery and throwing water balloons at cars from all the hiding places in that same cemetery. All of you are gone now, first Michael, then Gary, now you. You all left way too early.. and took a part of my childhood with you.

We watched you as diabetes took the youth away from your body.. but not your soul. The failed kidney transplants, the stints in your arteries, the leg amputation, the fire that burned you all over your upper body, the more than 30 surgeries you endured.. Yet, you never gave up. You never cried "Uncle" or let it stop you from doing what you wanted to do. Lesser men would have given up. Lesser men would have let the darkness take over, but you didn't. You didn't throw in the towel, you didn't roll over. You saw your limitations and said "Ahhh Screw-em". You worked hard until the moment you took your final breath on earth and your first one while being embraced in the loving arms of God.

You were the quintessential crotchety but lovable old fart. We were even laughing about it as we said goodbye to you in the hospital. Your rants and raves when somebody didn't do to suit you. When they didn't do as promised. When they seemed to have forgotten you and didn't call. I can emphatically say now "It's their loss".

It's not going to be the same without you. No more phone calls while you waited for your dialysis to be done. No more conversations about barbecue pits, catching feral cats or what items the grocery stores had on sale that week. I'll miss the calls about which neighbors were just picked up by the cops or needed code enforcement called on them. I'll have to stay in better contact with other neighbors to see how they are because you did that for me. You were always up to date with those who had moved on years before and those that were still around.

You refused when I offered you one of my kidneys. You told me "I've had two failed transplants, I don't want to chance it again. I don't want to take a good kidney from somebody that needs it. " Joe, That spoke volumes to me. I still wished you would have taken it but I understood.

So, goodbye Joe. I'm glad you are out of pain. You don't have to worry about your blood sugar any longer or be prisoner in your own body. You are free. It was good knowing you.


Anonymous said...

This is a beautiful tribute to your friend! He sounds like a great guy to have known.

Bill said...

Thank you. He had many friends who stuck by him a lot more than I did. It's just gonna be weird not to get anymore phone calls about the neighbors haha!

Anonymous said...

i've also lost someone dear to me. my son passed away in april of this year. so i am still coping with that and don't think the sadness will ever leave.he was only 49 yrs. old. people say it will get better. but i know i will only get used to him being gone is all. i have never hurt this bad in my life. i also lost my husband in 2000. that was hard but surprisingly not like this. we all must keep on with our lives and as we live, we will loose those close to us. so i know how you feel and the hurt that go's with it. jana

Bill said...

Jana, I'm so sorry for the loss of your son. I know it's overwhelming and the thoughts of him run constantly through your mind all day, everyday. I lost my closest family members in a horrible accident many years ago.

I blamed God for the longest time which did no good whatsoever. A year ago, I was at the funeral of a friends 23 year old son and my pastor said something that stuck with me.

He said "Don't blame God. God told us there would be trouble in this life, he said it would be tough. But God didn't take Jim, Cancer took Jim, God was simply there to welcome him home".

Again, I am so sorry for your loss Jana. I know its tough. My heart is with you.

Anonymous said...

Bill, this is Barb in Arizona and I've enjoyed your blog, but never commented. I have had many a laugh reading your posts on Southern Plate too. But today, as I read your tribute to your friend, I was very moved. Thank you for posting that. You are quite a gentleman, Bill Gent.

Bill said...

Hiya Barb! Thank you for the compliment. Joe endured a ton of things during his life. It was an honor for me to preach his funeral and sing for him. I miss him calling me to gripe about his neighbors lol. He was a hoot.


About Me

My photo
I'm 50 year old man who prays he won't take anyone out with him when he finally loses it. Copyright 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012