Friends/Last gathering.jpg

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    This was the last time that the four of us ever got together.  We all met at my brother's place in Vermont. That is Noel, my brother at left smiling in the aqua shirt. I am making faces next to him as Howie grumbles something. Our buddy Don is making the upside down horns on Noel in the back ground.     After this week we spent together, i never saw Don again for 10 years. I still visited my brother and saw howie once in a while, but living 3,000 miles away was sort of an impediment to frequent visits.  By the time Don and i reconnected, howie was in bad shape. He went blind, his wife died, and most of his organs were failing from years of diabetes. However in spite of all that, you could not get him down. He was the most up-beat soul i ever met. He has one answer for any and all problems that came his way, "... eh!  Wadda'ya gonna do?.." and that took care of all his obstacles.
Don and i went for a trip to Connecticut to see Howie before he died, and indeed, he did die that year. When we went to see him, he was in the hospital, and he died a few months later on. We will miss our buddy