There are a handful of people who, by my knowing them, have made life so much sweeter.
My 7th grade language arts teacher, challenged me to reach beyond my abilities and compete in the school spelling bee.
A former boss who gave me not one but two breaks in the work world.
Friends who taught me how to be supportive of others by example when they were by their being supportive of me.
And then there was my uncle Ragnal.
Uncle Ragnal was a tall, soft-spoken man who, nonetheless, knew how to get your attention when your attention needed getting.
I remember the funny stories he told in monotone that made them that much funnier.
He sent me funny cards in the mail after I sent him the first. I thought I was helping him at a low point in his life, but actually he helped me.
And Uncle Ragnal gave me a gentle kick in the ass a couple of times when I really needed it. There are few people in the world who will care enough about you to do that for you; treasure them.
My Uncle Ragnal died this week. I feel incredibly sad because I’ll never again have the chance to laugh at him, or feel the sting of his gentle rebuke.
Rest in peace, Uncle Ragnal.