ForeverMissed
This memorial website was created in memory of our loved one, John Wright, 68 years old, born on August 24, 1952, and passed away on October 11, 2020. We will remember him forever.
Posted by Ed McNally on February 7, 2021

I'm slow to provide my tribute to John. Not because I have any hesitation to add my tribute but rather because doing so makes his passing too real and final for me. 

I first had the privileged of getting to know John through his volunteering service to the Marshall Native Gardens and to the Friends of the Madison County Library.  John and Rita were both heavily involved in those community organizations and our friendship grew extending over a number of years and including many memorable social events involving John, Rita, me, and my wife Pam.  John could always be counted on to provide a confident smile and a helping hand. His humor, willingness to jump into and often lead when doing new things, and his steady competent manner were greatly admired and appreciated by everyone he touched. 

I really miss John and greatly appreciated having known him!
Posted by Cameron Dupuis on February 7, 2021
It’s taken me a long time to write this because every time I start, I cry, and I hate crying, so I stop. But as John would say, I have to “take the pain” and just get the words down.

I knew John through Alice, the oldest of his three wonderful kids. Like her parents, she is an incredibly generous, family-oriented person, so I was lucky enough to be invited over to the Wright-Pelczar abode several times during and after college. John and Rita were always the most welcoming of hosts, providing witty conversation and good food in abundance. Even when surrounded by a bunch of Alice’s squirrely college girl friends, John managed to provide words of insight and wisdom along with his hilariously searing sense of humor. I’ll always look back on those visits with a smile.

John was a giant in my eyes, and a legend to all who knew him. Rest In Peace, John.
Posted by Monica Pugliese on November 18, 2020
As early as I can remember, we spent weekends driving to Calvert county so our parents could play Balderdash upstairs and the cousins would wreak havoc in the basement. We also spent most holidays there. Driving down that long driveway , i always knew we would be greeted with Aunt Rita’s fresh home cooking and Uncle John’s larger than life personality! I feel so lucky I grew up around all that love and also the typical Wright way of teasing that gave me my sense of humor and thick skin. Most of our Wright family parties were in Calvert county, and it was very obvious that family meant the most to Uncle John. Thanks for passing that on to me. I’ll hold those childhood memories with you close to my heart!
Love, Moni
Posted by Cheryl Carson on November 3, 2020
Dear Rita and family, I was very sorry to hear about the passing of John. He is telling many stories and jokes to my Larry and others in heaven. What a smart, handsome, inspiring and funny man. Much like my Larry Carson! ❤️ God bless you all and keep you in His loving hands. Take care from Owen Soper Woods in Chesapeake Beach Md.
Posted by Paul Markie on November 1, 2020
Uncle John, you will always be in our memories and thoughts. There are many stories that I could relay, but one of the most memorable and entertaining, was about eleven years ago, right after I had started seriously dating my wife Sara. So I show up to a large Pelczar family event, and Uncle John sees that I arrived alone and is one of the first to greet me. So he says, rather loudly, "You Gutless Coward!" Uncle John had a way about him that I knew this was said for comedic effect, and not in a mean-spirited way. I'll always remember that moment, look back on it and laugh. Uncle John certainly had a way with words.
On many other occasions, we'd talk about sports, working for the Federal Government, and other topics. Once I had children, he was able to offer up some advice on parenting, sharing that "your kids will be the source of your highest highs and lowest lows, and it is all most certainly worth it." I'm happy that he did get to meet my children at the last Pelczar Easter gathering that we were able to all attend. I'll miss you Uncle John.

Posted by Jamie Zanelotti on October 31, 2020
Even before I met John I felt like I knew him. Knowing Joe Pugliese since high school, I heard so many stories where John’s personality loomed large, like when he told his kids and grandkids to “take the pain” or when he told Joe to have kids because “what else are you going to do?” I saw home videos of John and Katie’s kids playfully rough housing outside at the Calvert County house. The Pugliese home has tons of pictures of John throughout the years, from early Wright family photos to the most recent sibling reunion in DC.  I even got to spend some time with Jack when he stayed with the Pugliese’s while in school.

When I actually got to meet John at Shangri-la, he absolutely lived up to the larger-than-life human I’d been described all those years. I was accompanying Joe on his tour of the South and we stayed with John and Rita for a night. I remember all of us on the couch watching old home videos, drinking cocktails, and listening to John’s commentary of each scene. John clearly loved retirement life because he described going into work his last handful of years as “It’s not that I would think to myself, am I going to step into a bucket of sh*t today, but, how deep will it be?” It was a delightful hang and I felt right at home. 

I’m so grateful to have spent that time with John. His spirit remains alive in the Pugliese home. 
Posted by Joe Pugliese on October 24, 2020
Uncle John left an indelible mark on my life. There were two eras where I got to spend the most time with him. Growing up, our family would visit with him, Rita, Alice, Jack and Curtis monthly. Then, for about a decade beginning in my mid twenties, I would stay with John and Rita at Shangri-La when I would come through Asheville to play music.

Of the earlier era, I can still see John in my mind's eye. I imagine my family pulling into their long winding driveway, John dismounting from his riding lawn mower in shorts that were a little too short for modern standards, with a Nattie Boh in a coozy, his dog Nellie getting too excited and him yelling "Get back you HOUND!". 

Even then, his signature vocabulary was fully formed. I can see Curtis playing in the basement by the wood burning stove, John coming down the stairs and calling us "Animals!" I can see my cousin Jack in trouble for some childhood infraction, Uncle John squeezing the middle of his arm, and I can hear him saying "Take The Pain!" Pulling out of the driveway on a Sunday night I can still hear him explaining to us that tomorrow morning he had to be up at "O Dark Thirty".

Of the later era, I mainly remember him plying me bourbon after concerts. But the last memory I have of him is the most striking, and the most revelatory about his character.

The last time I visited Shangri-La, John already had his diagnosis. They were clearing out the house in preparation for the move. So the morning after the show, he asked me to come down to the crawl space to help load up a table onto their four-wheeler.  It was just the two of us.

As we worked, he explained to me that moving out of Shangri-La and getting Rita settled in the new house was his last "primary directive". He said it with his tongue-in-cheek, Spock-like inflection. But he was serious. 

Here was my uncle, facing down death entirely too soon, and his only thought was for his wife. That says it all about him. His family always came first, even in the final trial. True grit that any of us would be proud to display half of.

I love you Uncle John, and I will pass along the lessons you taught me to my children.
Posted by Cheryl MacKinnon on October 19, 2020
1952 was a good year. My husband and I were also born that year. I remember when John first met Rita. I remember him joining our “wild dancing” at “My Mother’s Place”! When I think of John, I remember his spark, energy, sense of humor and .........his eyes. In our locomotion there were many but I can only picture the two of them. We danced as a mass. John danced with Rita!!
Posted by Laurie Cuttino on October 18, 2020
My uncle JJ was one of a kind. I credit him with teaching me two phases I use regularly. The first, perhaps used originally by Clint Eastwood but more memorably by my Uncle John, is “a man’s got to know his limitations “. The second, not sure if its provenance but I like to think it’s a JJ original, is “that does not pass my give a shit test”. I realize, particularly during times like these, how incredibly unique our family really is. So many good times. So many laughs. Does anyone remember the insane boxing match circa 1983? I was firmly team “Pugnacious Pugliese”. My Uncle John features prominently in all my best memories. His devotion to his amazing wife and kids still sets my personal bar for what a great husband and dad looks like. I miss you, Johnny. But, like you always taught me, I’ll “take the pain”.
Posted by Greg Tuohey on October 17, 2020
I got to know John through touring with Joe Pug. Every time we came through Asheville, the band would stay with John and Rita at their beautiful hop farm.

It was always such a pleasure to step out of touring life for a bit, sit with John at his place after the show, crack a “medicinal “ and just chat for a while. He was always a joy to be around and generous beyond belief. I also remember the lavish breakfasts John and Rita would put together the next morning we’re enough to sustain us on the road for a week!

Sometimes you meet people in this life that are simply and inarguably good people. John was one of them. My thoughts go out to Rita and the rest of Johns family.

Greg Tuohey
Posted by Ryan Fallon on October 16, 2020
I got to know John during my formative teenage years as a close friend of his sons, Jack and Curt. "Got to know" probably isn't the right phrase as what ended up happening in those years transcended the typical "supervision". John (and Rita) created a home away home for me and the rest of our friends. They weren't just patient enough to hear us learn how to play our instruments through weekly band practice sessions in their basement, but they created an environment where we felt that we were part of the family. It was a special thing. As we grew older, our other close friends like Erik and myself started to look forward to the time we got to spend with John and Rita after our basement jam sessions as much as the time we spent with our friends there. It became clear pretty quickly that John cared about who we became as men and citizens as much as he did his own sons. The conversations and lessons that were shared in those years still stick with me to this day. He had this gift of imparting wisdom without being preachy. Aside from practicing what he was "preaching", I always try to emulate that way about him.

That tradition continued as we grew into young adults and the conversations and lessons became more tangible and applicable to the rites of passage we were going through. John had a way with words where he kept you engaged as he spun yarn...reeling you in and then sticking the landing with a point that stuck with you forever. Always over a drink and always in a jovial setting, but always making sure he reminded us about accountability, about how to carry ourselves as men and leaders, and always making sure we were saving money so that we can have the retirement bliss that he and Rita created in Shangri-la.

I will always cherish my relationship with John. I'm so very glad to have been able to stay connected with him. I had the honor of giving the best man speech at Erik's wedding (one of the aforementioned teenaged band members and fellow John Wright disciple). I had the even more distinct honor of having John Wright -- the Legend Himself!! -- congratulate me at the end of it and tell me how well I did. It's one of my last memories of him...I made him proud. I hope I always do :)

I'll miss you John. I thank you for raising some of the best men I'll ever have the pleasure to know in Jack and Curt. I don't know two people with a stronger sense of self and purpose, and a stronger moral compass to guide their lives. Your legacy is a beautiful family, and I like to think that I get to count myself a part of that legacy. Rita, Alice, Curt, and Jack - I am so sorry for your loss, but so glad to have known your father. May he rest in peace.
Posted by David Pappano on October 16, 2020
I first came to know John through stories, told by his daughter Alice, probably sometime during our undergraduate years at Wake Forest. Alice and I were friends in undergraduate, and had the good fortune of attending graduate school together as well at University of Michigan.

I finally met John on an unseasonably warm fall day in Ann Arbor. We attended the now infamous App State - Univ Michigan football game together (Sept 1, 2007, 34-32 App State upset). As Jack was currently attending App State, he proudly wore his son's college colors into the Big House and adamantly cheered on the mountaineers.

When I learned of his diagnosis years ago, I feared for him but I knew he would face the disease down with the same courage he had wearing the only black & gold shirt amidst a sea of maize and blue. If App State could pull out a miraculous victory on that day, then maybe too could John.

I hope you are playing a game of flagdragon with Richard Parker somewhere John. You will be missed.



Posted by Erik Forseth on October 16, 2020
I've had the good fortune of knowing John for most of my life. He's present in so many of my treasured memories. I'll never forget the proud handshake he gave me when I got into college, and that same handshake at my wedding fifteen years later.

In fact, I'm fairly certain I introduced my now-wife to John and Rita before introducing her to my own parents. We took a trip out to the farm in Marshall early on in our courtship. My plan was reasonable: if she could just meet my friends' cool parents, and spend some time on their gorgeous mountain property, surely she would see what a cool guy *I* must be, by association. After a few drinks I realized my mistake. I'd now introduced her to a standard of wit and charm -- namely, John -- that I could never hope to live up to. Well, it still worked out for me in the end.

For much of the time that I knew him, John took it upon himself to be something of a mentor. You see, John was one of the world's foremost experts on the stupidest human demographic: young men in their teens and early 20s. He had a *razor* sharp understanding of the ways that young men will be stupid. And so we got treated to many unforgettable speeches over the years -- alternately stern, loving, and hilarious -- that we still quote constantly...

"College, it was the best of times, it was the poorest of times."

"Have your fun now, but remember that one day you'll be pissing in a cup for the Man."

"You boys and your reefer!"

I don't know that John ever got seriously concerned about what we were doing or where we were headed, though I suppose he knew that even good kids can be one or two bad decisions away from something irreversible. Really I think it's just that he wanted to see us succeed SO badly. And god! did his kids succeed. An archaeologist, a lawyer, and a dentist. How classic-sounding is that? These are like, the first three answers you might get if you polled a class of elementary schoolers on what they hope to be when they grow up. Alice, Jack, and Curt: your dad was so unbelievably proud of you all.

The first time I spoke with John after his diagnosis was at Jack's wedding in 2017. It must've seemed like an elephant in the room, and he brought it up right away. His feelings were thoughtful and nuanced in a way that's still hard for me to process. He was scared, of course, but he was also so damned positive about it. He said he had an "expiration date," that everyone has one, they just don't know what it is, whereas now he more or less knew his. He talked about what that meant for him and the way he approached the remainder of his life. It's a conversation I'll always remember, and doubtless the most important of all his lessons.

I tell people that John's a hero of mine, and that's no exaggeration. He's a hero for his work ethic, for his family and the life he built for them, and for the way he faced dying.

Rest easy, John, and thank you for everything.
Posted by Monica Wright on October 16, 2020
Rita, Alice, Jack and Curtis
There is this palpable squeezing in my heart knowing that John is no longer here with us. I am grateful for his larger than life personality that left us full of amazing memories. Not only was he a talker and debater, a fun-loving teaser, and a thinker, he was also one who could listen and be emotionally in tune. Even though he could be a jokester, he also cared deeply about the people he loved. John and Rita gave such a gift to us brothers and sisters by being so forthright as he faced his end of life journey. No small task.

Posted by Patricia Haddad on October 16, 2020
Just a fond memory I have of my visit with John and Rita two years ago when I visited with them at their rental home in Blowing Rock. At this time they were in the process of building their new home in Morgonton, NC

Alone with John he commented, "I think we are a bit crazy to be designing and building a new home at this time, but I want Rita to have a nice home if she is left without me".

Alone with Rita she commented, "I think we are a bit crazy to be building a home at this time, but John loves the process and I want him to have something to focus on during this trying time".

Their love and strength touched my heart.
Posted by Patrick Meehan on October 15, 2020
My deepest sympathy to John’s family and the entire Wright family. I cannot imagine how difficult it must have been for all of you to see him struggle for all those years. Hopefully, your memories of the time you spent with him, and enjoying him, will provide you some degree of solace. When the “Kirk” cousins gathered as we were all growing up, the scene was always wonderfully chaotic as four large families converged for Fourth of July or Thanksgiving celebrations. While we could all get lost in the unruly mob of about forty other “cousins”, John’s spirit and personality always made his visits memorable. I, and I believe all the cousins, have a feeling of kinship with, and pride in, our large extended family and John was very much a part of it.
Pat Meehan Family
Posted by Marge Meehan on October 15, 2020
After reading the summary of John’s life, Joe and I hope that such a well lived life has it’s comforts for those he leaves behind.
We send our best wishes that the pain of his passing is soon replaced with warm and cherished memories that sustain and warm you all.
Marge Meehan and Joe Proulx (Marge is John’s Aunt Gert’s middle child)







Posted by Bernard Meehan on October 15, 2020
Our deepest sympathies go out to Rita, Alice, Jack, Curtis and all the Wrights. Please accept our condolences. We wish we could all pack a memorial service to express, in person, our heartfelt thoughts. All of the Wrights, Meehans and Noels have fond memories of our 1950’s holiday get-togethers.
BL and Kathleen Meehan
Posted by Thomas Noël on October 14, 2020
I remember John and Rita back in circa 1980s or early 1990s in downtown Washington, DC. They were with cousins Greg and Katie Pugliese. We all were watching a live Rock ‘n’ Roll band. Enjoyed talking with John and Rita very much.

At the time, I believe Greg was playing in a band. It was upstairs on the second floor of a bar right near Connecticut Avenue & Rhode Island Avenue, Northwest Washington, DC.
Posted by Katie Pugliese on October 14, 2020
Brother John was one of a kind....and a great big brother.....alternately maddening and charming. He was larger than life and always brought the fun to family gatherings. He loved teasing which I didn’t mind because in a big family, ANY attention was good. I forgive him for hanging my Humpty-Dumpty doll from a noose when I was about 6 years old, but not for ruining Humpty’s felt eyes by putting cloths pins on them. ❤️
I’m comforted that he will be able to meet his fourth brother, Herbie, in heaven for the first time. I will miss John dearly but am grateful for the wealth of good times we shared. Soooo many good memories.
Love you, Brother. Rest easy. You did good and you died with grace just like our Mom taught us.
Posted by Ann Markie on October 14, 2020
John will be greatly missed at future family gatherings.... never at a loss for words, he was a colorful, energetic presence. I will especially miss the after (sometimes during) dinner discussions/debates on whatever issue was brought up. 
Posted by Jo Clark on October 14, 2020
John was a vibrant, dynamic presence at all of our family gatherings. His passing leaves a void in our lives, and he will be sorely missed. Thank you for sharing this site. John's was a life to be celebrated!
Posted by Janice Sosebee on October 14, 2020
Bless you, John  All my love
Posted by Jessica MacKinnon on October 14, 2020
Thank you so much for creating this site to celebrate John’s life. The pictures are wonderful, and I learned so much about John. An amazing man. And I never realized how much Joe looks like John. Joe’s a lucky guy. God bless the whole family.

Leave a Tribute

 
Recent Tributes
Posted by Ed McNally on February 7, 2021

I'm slow to provide my tribute to John. Not because I have any hesitation to add my tribute but rather because doing so makes his passing too real and final for me. 

I first had the privileged of getting to know John through his volunteering service to the Marshall Native Gardens and to the Friends of the Madison County Library.  John and Rita were both heavily involved in those community organizations and our friendship grew extending over a number of years and including many memorable social events involving John, Rita, me, and my wife Pam.  John could always be counted on to provide a confident smile and a helping hand. His humor, willingness to jump into and often lead when doing new things, and his steady competent manner were greatly admired and appreciated by everyone he touched. 

I really miss John and greatly appreciated having known him!
Posted by Cameron Dupuis on February 7, 2021
It’s taken me a long time to write this because every time I start, I cry, and I hate crying, so I stop. But as John would say, I have to “take the pain” and just get the words down.

I knew John through Alice, the oldest of his three wonderful kids. Like her parents, she is an incredibly generous, family-oriented person, so I was lucky enough to be invited over to the Wright-Pelczar abode several times during and after college. John and Rita were always the most welcoming of hosts, providing witty conversation and good food in abundance. Even when surrounded by a bunch of Alice’s squirrely college girl friends, John managed to provide words of insight and wisdom along with his hilariously searing sense of humor. I’ll always look back on those visits with a smile.

John was a giant in my eyes, and a legend to all who knew him. Rest In Peace, John.
Posted by Monica Pugliese on November 18, 2020
As early as I can remember, we spent weekends driving to Calvert county so our parents could play Balderdash upstairs and the cousins would wreak havoc in the basement. We also spent most holidays there. Driving down that long driveway , i always knew we would be greeted with Aunt Rita’s fresh home cooking and Uncle John’s larger than life personality! I feel so lucky I grew up around all that love and also the typical Wright way of teasing that gave me my sense of humor and thick skin. Most of our Wright family parties were in Calvert county, and it was very obvious that family meant the most to Uncle John. Thanks for passing that on to me. I’ll hold those childhood memories with you close to my heart!
Love, Moni
his Life

Rest in peace, John

Last weekend, our family (Alice, Cameron, Emmett, and Forrest; Jack and Sophia; Curt, Emily, and Griffin; and I) traveled to Fontana Lake in the far western mountains of North Carolina to spread John's ashes in a spot in the Great Smoky Mountains that we loved. We vacationed in the area, discovering the spot when the kids were young, in 1995. There's a roaring creek and peaceful woods. I still remember John shouting to the kids, "only go in up to your knees!"  Of course, they got thoroughly soaked. We were so happy there. John and I returned alone in 2014. It's a magical spot.

The weekend was one of strong emotions --joy at being together to celebrate John's life and love, and of missing him and his fun-loving nature intensely. But we felt his love. After a rainy Saturday,  Sunday morning arrived sunny and warm.  We decided that John must have had something to do with that. So on April 11, 6 months after he left us, we hiked to the spot, spread his ashes, and cried. 

My sister, Jo, had sent me a poem earlier, the last few lines spoke to us:

Love doesn't die, people do.
So, when all that is left of me is love,
Give me away.

Rest in peace, my love.



obituary

John Joseph Wright, age 68, died on October 11 at his home in Morganton, NC.  Born in Silver Spring, MD, he resided in Chesapeake Beach, MD most of his adult life, where he raised his family. During his 32-year career with the Department of Defense, John was consistently recognized for outstanding performance.

            John retired to the mountains of North Carolina in 2007 to fulfill his dream of creating a sustainable mountain farm. With wife Rita he developed extensive gardens, raised hops for local breweries, volunteered with the Marshall Native Gardens and the Madison County Library, and entertained a constant stream of family and friends, to whom he was affectionately known as “The Legend.” John’s greatest joys were watching his children develop into exceptional adults, holding each new grandson, and enjoying the mountain view from his porch at “Shangri-la” as he sipped an evening “medicinal.”

            John was preceded in death by his parents, Jack and Kathleen Wright, and brother Herbie. He is survived by his wife, Rita Pelczar, daughter, Alice Wright (Cameron Gokee), sons Jack Wright (Sophia Reini), and Curtis Wright (Emily); grandsons Emmett and Forrest Gokee, and Griffin Wright; and eight loving siblings George (Pat), Anne (Ken), Charlie (Kathy), Martha (Gary), Mary (Rocky), Katie (Greg), Monica (Jerry) and Maureen (Joe). He will be missed by a large extended family and many wonderful friends.

            In lieu of flowers, gifts of condolence may be sent to Burke County Hospice (www.burkehospice.org.) or Mann Food Bank in Asheville, NC (www.mannafoodbank.org).

Recent stories

I’d forgotten this!

Shared by Martha Toth on November 30, 2020
Today, I shared an Internet suggestion: When you are in public and a stranger sits down beside you, just stare straight ahead and say, “Did you bring the money?”
Sister Anne reminded me that John used to come up behind you, stick his finger in your back, and whisper, “Act like nothing’s wrong.”
The memory made me smile, as I hope it does you

Making Less Woods

Shared by Rita Pelczar on November 12, 2020

John loved his woods.

During one of Cameron’s first visits to Shangri-la, Alice explained to him how her dad spent a lot of time the woods, selecting and pruning trees, removing unwanted underbrush, simply making the woods more inviting. As they walked though the woods, Cameron commented something like, “Where most men see impenetrable forest, John Wright sees less woods.” 

The phrase stuck. John would suit up in the morning and say, “I’m out to make less woods.”  He tended his the trees like they were children and enjoyed monitoring their progress. Sometimes he’d select a young desirable tree that was too close to another, and carefully transplant it to another site. Wherever we’ve lived, from our little rancher on Christianna Parran Road, to the house on Holderness Lane where we raised the kids, to our wonderful Shangri-La in the North Carolina mountains, and finally the new home we built in Morganton to be closer to the kids, he made sure that each property included significant woods. 

Once at Holderness Lane, I came home from a grocery run to find John sitting about 35 feet off the ground, in a huge oak. He was attaching a rope to a large branch so the kids would have a decent tire swing. I was not pleased because it looked mighty dangerous. In fact, once he got down he admitted that while as a kid he used to climb with abandon, as an adult, he found it a little scary up there. Nonetheless, the kids had a backyard tire swing that couldn’t be beat.

At Shangri-la I remember him pointing out some dead and dying trees to visiting nephew Nick Haddad. He was planning to take them down. Nick, an environmental ecologist, said, “Don’t do that, they’re habitat,” (for a variety of forest creatures). After that, John purposely left those sentinels. He’d just point to them, smile, and say, “Habitat.”

He was so excited when we discovered the diversity of trees on the Morganton property, especially several large beeches—John’s favorite tree.  Even before the house was built, he had selected trees in the woods to cultivate and then he planted a few more.

He knew that planting trees was something you did not for yourself but for those who follow you. John has passed a rich sylvan legacy to future generations who will walk in the shade that he lovingly nurtured. 



"That's my brother, John"

Shared by Gregory Pugliese on October 31, 2020
           In the summer of 1980, my new girlfriend Katie Wright invited me to a party down Chesapeake Beach way.  "It'll be fun" she said.  "you can meet my brother...and these beach parties rock."  So we went.  We pulled into a driveway, grabbed our towels and followed the noise around to the back of the house.  A large group of people had gathered, centered around a volleyball game in the sand. We jumped into the game and started playing.  Shortly, there was a disagreement between the two teams...too much beer and sun. A lean disheveled guy with longish hair and a trimmed beard planted himself at the net.  At first I thought he was going to start a fight, but detected a playfulness about him.  He grabbed the net with both hands, opened his mouth, bit the net, and starting growling...finally tilting his head to the sky and roaring "OH, MAN!" Katie looked at me and said, "that's my brother John." 
          Oh, brother John. I will mourn you and miss you dearly. Your passion and love of life trickled down to all of us.  You laughed so easily.  You made us laugh. You made us think.  You made us cry. We will carry on and be thankful you graced our lives...but damnit, we'll miss you so. I love you brother John.