Bryan Young

Who was Bryan Young? Oh my...Bryan was a force to be reckoned with. Everyone stood taller than Bryan, but Bryan didn't let his size determine how anyone was going to talk or treat him. He was a jockey, bouncer, an assistant wrestling coach and history teacher at a local high school in town as well as the men's soccer coach and cross country coach at the same high school. While doing all of this through his life he was working on his masters degree to become a Vice Principal then Principal as well as President of the Professional Educators of Norman. As he was Principal he continued his education working on his Juris Doctorate Degree before achieving his life long dream of becoming an attorney.

The man had a intense competitive nature that had no bounds. Lose was not in his vocabulary. In college Bryan was an athlete who wrestled and won the heart of gymnast Lisa Cockriel. After college someone suggested that Bryan might try becoming a jockey as he was so small, understand Bryan had never been on a horse before. Bryan didn't let that stop him. For six years he was a professional jockey before an almost tragic accident which could have taken his life. A horse stumbled during a race, flipped and fell on top of Bryan and broke his neck.

Bryan survived and decided that he needed a safer form of work so he went to work in education for 17 years. Bryan would fight for your ideas. He would support you, encourage you, lift you up, have your six. Fight for the right for handicapped children to have an education. If you were wrong he would tell you but he would support you. If there was an athletic or student event out of town he would drive to watch his students participate or perform. He felt education was important and he wanted to make sure everyone had an education, the best education. If you didn't have books he would make sure you had books and more. He had a heart of gold.  One of his former students summed it up this way

"If a fair measure of a person's life is the positive impact that he left on others, and I think that's the best metric we have, then we should all hope to have lives like Bryan Young. He always exuded a genuine care and sense of humor towards his students and others. It's hard to make sense of what happened, but there's a small comfort in the timelessness of our memories with him."

I met Bryan when he became my daughters soccer coach. He was tough but fair. He had never coached girls before and boy was he in for the challenge. Those girls sure gave him a hard time but they loved him. Bryan really had to put up with hormones plus! He said he would never coach another girls club team...ever again...he did. He went on inspiring young minds to succeed both on and off the athletic field.

Bryan fulfilled his dream to become an attorney 3 years ago. Fighting for the everyday joe. Taking cases that were important to him. One is still guessed it, has to do with education and the handicapped.

Five years ago Bryan and Lisa brought home a beautiful baby boy, Braxton, adopted like Bryan was. The light and joy of both Bryan and Lisa.

Sadly Bryan was murdered last Tuesday night by a deranged man who broke into his home because Bryan was representing this man's wife in a nasty divorce case. This person went on to murder his ex-wife as well and set fire to her home the same evening, then took his own life.

I wish you could have known Bryan, I really do. These few sentences hardly tell the story of Bryan, the generosity of his heart, his kindness, his humor, his sternness yet understanding when working with his students. The man loved his wife and his child dearly and it showed.

So little Braxton, when you look to the heavens at night, look for a new star, look for the brightest star that is shinning because that will be your daddy looking down at you, saying "It's ok son, I've got your six."

Rest now Bryan, your work is done.

Go in Peace.

Dealing With Loss...

My father died just before Christmas in 1988 and my mother just after the New Year in 1997. I was able to get through those holidays ok except for having depression for three years after my mom's demise. For what ever reason this past Christmas I struggled with the loss of David.

I found myself crying more, feeling more sorrowful. Feeling lost overall. Is this a delayed reaction? I have never gone through the 5 phases of grief. Why get mad? What is there to get mad at? God? What does He have to do with it? We knew that Dave was on borrowed time, that he could go at any time. Denial? I knew he was gone before everyone around me did.  When you see him on the ground but feel him next to you, you just know. Anger? The only thing I was angry about was about Dave not being more proactive about his health and questioning his Doctors more. Bargaining? Not once have I bargained with God. Just wished to have told him how much I loved him one more time. Depression, Yes I am struggling with depression. Not all of it is David. I have a back issue that is depressing. Some days are just hard to get through. On top of everything my one daughter's God-child died un-expectantly and since then it has put me into a tail-spin and I just lost a dear friend of mine of 13 years and my other daughter's soccer coach was senselessly murdered. Yeah a lot to go through in six months. Acceptance, I have accepted that Dave has died and I must hold the family together but it is damn hard.

I once again find the house rebelling. I had to have a new furnace installed to the tune of $3800.00.
After Dave passed away everything seemed to break down.  I thought having the outdoor Christmas lights put up over the holidays would improve my mood. Not really. Although taking some Vitamin D3 did help some. 

With family so far away and no close friends here, it really puts a damper on things for wanting to get out and do anything. My one close and true friend died 23 years ago and I have never been able to find another friend that I could be that close to. Even after 23 years I miss her every day.  I envy people who have many close friends (sisters so to speak). Every time I try to get close to someone they leave. Why try?  I do have one friend I can call on for help when needed and I really do appreciate him and his family and all the help they have helped me with these past couple of years.  I also have one of the families of the former Fury team that has helped me with a problem that I had with the guttering on my house and for that I am truly grateful. I have a neighbor across the street that keeps an eye out on me, has since Dave passed away. But a close friend, nope, nada. Unless I initiate the call no one calls me.
Don't get me wrong, I have friends, but that soul friend, the one you can tell your secrets to...that friend.

My motorhome, my safe haven, ended up in the shop longer than expected and is now having to have transmission work done. Not what I wanted to hear. It never ends.

Spring is around the corner and with that campouts with my WIT club. That makes me feel good. What is it about winter that just puts a big damper on things?
What is it about loss that just makes life suck?