You should have been there!

Malcolm, TJ got married on Saturday.  You were meant to be his best man. You were meant to be there. Instead there was just the echo of your presence: masses you attended as a student for five years, receiving your senior ring, and the Thanksgiving when your dad gave the talk before the baskets were delivered. We took pictures — all four of us on the altar. Your dad was so proud to have both his boys there.

And the next time we were all together on that altar was for your funeral. It was so hard to look at the altar on Saturday and not see your coffin,  it was so hard to read from the podium and not remember reading your eulogy, and to walk down those steps and not remember your uncles carrying you out as you left the chapel one last time. But I did it because I love TJ and TJ loved you. I was going to be there for him even though you weren’t. I’m mad at you for that Malc, for letting TJ down.

But you were there at least in all of our hearts and in the echoes of your laughter and the memories of your smile. I just wish….but you know what I wish.

I love you son.

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