Less than a week ago, I found out a former coworker died in a car crash by a drunken driver who drove into oncoming traffic.
When I saw the newspaper article I wasn't sure it was the same person I once knew but after piecing together all the info I confirmed it was him.
I felt flustered and distracted by the news and couldn't focus on anything else.
I've lost many family members to illness and disease and old age but this is the first time someone I've known died so tragically and so young. He was only 27.
What was the point of him living at all then if his chance at life was cut short? It just doesn't make sense.
He worked with me briefly at my old city job about five years ago before he found another position elsewhere.
We stayed in touch for about two-or-so years after that.
I remember him being very social, driven, and having a zest for life.
But we were casual friends. I think I was too straight-laced for him at that time as he was very much into the typical gay scene and I wasn't. Eventually it felt like a one-sided friendship and I moved on.
During the memorial service last Thursday, there was a slideshow of pictures from the past few years. My, how many people he knew and met in such a short time.
"He had a lot of friends," his mom told me.
I felt compelled to attend the wake to not only pay my respects to his family but to also apologize to him for not staying in touch. And perhaps a part of me needed to see the body to make sure the tragedy was true.
It had been such a long, emotionally draining week for everyone involved. It's still hard to believe he's gone. But as I said to his mom when I gave her a hug, "He's still here. Just in another way."
I do believe that and hope he saw me there that day.
Rest in peace, Fabian. My heart aches and I will miss you.....