|Best friends Tim and John H.|
I had met Tim when I went to Rutgers University. By the time I became a brother, he was no longer at Rutgers but still remained a brother for life coming to our events whenever he could. His best friend was my other fraternity brother, John Hammell. John and Tim attended high school together and following that, college. Their friendship and bond remained as strong and close as ever until Tim's untimely passing.
John gave one of the eulogies recounting how genuine Tim always was.He entertained us with stories of Tim's love of golf. Tim was always so positive, uplifting, ready to crack a joke, and ready to help anyone in need. It was just such a fitting tribute. Tim was a big guy and when I first met him at a Phi Psi football tailgate, he gave me a big bear hug which I think cracked three or four vertebrae. LOL. That was Tim: he greeted you with a big smile, then the fraternity handshake, and then a big bear hug. And he always meant the hug. Such a great guy.
|Kerry and I acting crazy in the late 80s!|
Tim's Mom spoke briefly at the funeral. I was holding it together until she stated how upset she was that she would not be receiving a Mother's Day card that year from her son. I broke down into tears as did most of us by that point. For me, it brought back memories of how close I was with my deceased mother with that mother - child connection. Tim's wife also spoke, thanking everyone for attending. The pain and sadness was so evident and overwhelming. Tim leaves behind two incredible children, Caitlin and Collin, who were so brave at the funeral.
|Tim and Kerry|
Kerry concluded her eulogy with shots passed around of Tim's favorite Tullamore Dew Irish whiskey. There must have been at least 50 shots passed out. I stood with my fraternity brothers. At Kerry's direction, we all toasted to Tim and took the shot. Upon leaving, we also received golf tees in remembrance of his love for the sport! It was a truly fitting send off.
|Brothers Tim, Dave B., and myself|
I looked around at these guys, my fraternity brothers, and marveled at how we all came here for Tim and to support Tim's family. There were those brothers that couldn't attend but had wanted to. We understood that. These guys are the same guys that have met up for the last 25 years at McSorley's Old Ale House in NYC for our annual reunion in November. Tim unfortunately couldn't make it this last year.
I love these guys like family. I want you to know that I went to the funeral also for them. I wanted and needed to support their loss of their close friend. I did not know Tim as well as my brothers did but of course he was still my "brother". I was closer at the time to his little sister Kerry.
My brothers were the ones that went to school with him, pledged with him, and golfed with him. I came along after but Tim being the great guy that he was, treated me as if I were always part of that original group. That was Tim. That meant the world to me and I will never forget that.