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Just a Closer Walk with Thee

It was guard weekend this weekend. My last weekend here. In 23 days, I leave for basic training. What once seemed so scary now pales in comparison to everything. Of all the scenarios I could have come home to, this is one I could not have planned for. For me, it was better to find this out now than to go away and not learn for months that this had happened.

A brilliant light has gone out. Dave Wells passed away today. Apparently, his cancer had come back and he was in treatment the last few days. No wonder the heavens have been crying all this weekend. "...and already, the world seems a bit less bright."

It's not fair. I only got one semester with him. Even though he retired this year, he was supposed to come in and visit us and help along the new band teacher or whoever was going to teach us. This is worse than just having him be retired. What's going to happen to us now?

I've been trolling facebook to see what all my other bandmates are saying and feeling.

I remember first meeting him when I was in high school. I interviewed him for one of my English 102 essays. I also remember him being at the audition day. He asked me if I wanted to be in Blue Thunder. I told him of course, except that I didn't play any instruments that were in Blue Thunder. Next thing I know, I'm signed up for Blue Thunder and have a saxophone check out worked out so I can learn during the summer. I also remember him pulling aside some freshmen who were taking music theroy and had just failed our first test of the year and joking with me that he would call Mr. Sullivan and tell him I failed a music theory test. While it sounds cruel and not funny, the way he was talking at the time made it funny. Our moment of silent prayer after every tailgate followed by his customary, "may God bless and give 'em hell!" I remember how upset he was when he had to tell us that the whole band couldn't go to the Poinsetta Bowl and how he was going to limit the numbers. I was fine with not going because I got to spend time with my friend who was coming from from his army schooling. But now I'll never get a band trip with Dave.

Dave was the only guy who could say "May God bless" to me and I wouldn't feel the slightest bit insulted. He was practically a grandfather to god knows how many students. He retired so he could spend more time with his wife and kids and grandkids. That's why it's not fair. His life was just starting a new chapter. It wasn't supposed to end there.

Don't you hate how in life there are those who touch your life so significantly but only get to be there for such a short time? It's a cruel joke Fate plays.

I'm so glad I got to play for Dave at the last basketball game. I just wish it really hadn't been the last time. I wish we all could have just one more Closer Walk With Thee, Dave.

I have always believed that when my grandma died, she came and visited my family and me. She came in our dreams and showed us that she was okay and not in pain anymore. She visited me twice. About a year after her death, she didn't visit anymore. Do you think that's why we can never accept when someone is dead? Because we can still feel their spirit around us? Maybe Dave's spirit will stick around for a while to watch over us all. And if that's the case, I want to see everyone on that field this summer giving hell and showing Dave's new band of angels on the Big Blue Turf how we do it here on Earth!

Goodbye, Dave. And I hope I get to meet you again.

And the spirit of life

Oh, oh, iyo
Mamela [Listen]
Oh, oh, iyo

And a voice
With the fear of a child

Oh, oh, iyo
Oh, mamela [Listen]
Oh, oh, iyo

Ubukhosi bo khokho [Throne of the ancestors]
We ndodana ye sizwe sonke [Oh, son of the nation)]

There's no mountain too great
Oh, oh, iyo
Hear the words and have faith
Oh, oh, iyo
Have faith

Hela hey mamela [Hey, listen]

He lives in you
He lives in me
He watches over
Everything we see
Into the water
Into the truth
In your reflection
He lives in you
As we go through this wilderness here below
Dave, guide our feet through peaceful eyes
We do not know how long t'will be
Or what the future holds for thee
But this I know, if I must die tonight
I am part of Blue Thunder


( 2 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 5th, 2009 04:20 pm (UTC)
I'm sorry Aubreychan. Although I didn't know him, he seemed like a really great guy and an important person in your life. I'm sending you lots of mental hugs!
May. 6th, 2009 01:20 am (UTC)
:( I'm sorry for your loss, but hey, at least he had a good life, yanno? And though you only had a little time together, you learned a lot from him.
( 2 comments — Leave a comment )