Went to a funeral today. What a sad thing. A friend, a gentle soul, passed away last Thursday. The chapel was packed, and not a dry eye in the house when a guitar solo played "Tears in Heaven", by Eric Clapton. A biker with the name "Deacon" sewn on his leather vest presided over the service, but only after his sister got up to read a letter she had written to the little brother she lost and tell him how heartbroken she was that he could never overcome his addiction. "Not a mean bone in his body", people shared at the end of the service, and "He always told you he loved you, even if you didn't feel like anyone cared". A sweet, kind man in his forties who battled with drugs and alcohol...and lost. Some came drunk or loaded, but most didn't. They came clean and sober, taking in the full impact of where drugs and alcohol can lead them if they didn't take it seriously. I couldn't help thinking about John and the lives lost at the Wonderland house...not to mention a few others that were close to me and died after those years in LA. It is real, it is never pretty and it is always permanent.
I know my friend tried his best all the way up to the end. It was just too tough for him. I remember his eyes. Deep inside I always saw how hard he tried to stay clean. I hope he doesn't have to struggle anymore. I hope he is at peace.