This morning I lost someone who brought so much laughter and joy to all those around him. Ben Meyer – a caring friend, committed teammate, and wonderful person – lost his battle with cancer.
I recently had a conversation with a close friend who lost his mother to cancer at a young age. I asked him,”How do you continue on in life after such a devastating loss?”. He said, “We have no choice… we live and continue to model and teach the lessons that my mom taught us. Her legacy lives on each day through me, my brothers, my students, and our children.”
There has been much talk on Facebook about the laughter that Ben brought so many of us with his story-telling and positive outlook on life; you had no choice but to get sore cheeks from laughter when he was telling his legendary stories. No matter how many times you heard them, (because there was always someone there that had not yet herd them), his strength in re-telling it sent tears rolling down our faces. Just 3 days ago, when he was struggling to talk, he retold one last story to 5 of us surrounding him in the hospital… that is what he was all about – making people smile.
He treated EVERY person around him with the same care, energy and happiness that just made you feel like you were better because you spent time with him. Ben was a leader and he knew his strengths. He never hacked down those around him; instead he chose to build everyone else up. Ben was not the best ball player… but he played on the best teams because of the positive impact he had on others.
My director of instruction said to me the other day, “People do not remember positions or rank or certificates… they remember how you treat people”. Ben treated everyone as if he was so glad that you were near him at that moment. You had no choice but to “catch” his positive energy. Ben will always be remembered… for the wonderful way he treated people.
When someone passes on, we often hear the good things that he/she brought to our lives. For Ben Meyer, he heard this throughout his life because that is how he led his life – it was all about the good things. He continually challenged himself and savoured the moments.
Ben taught me a lot as a person but the most important lesson was a simple but essential one: treat people well. I am thankful for the 11 years I knew him. It is now up to those of us who knew him to continue to model and teach the lessons he taught us… and the impact and legacy of Ben Meyer will continue on forever.
We love ya Benny…