I miss your beautiful face Brother.
by Shawn Neily
(Salt Lake City, UT)
My story begins on Friday, February 21st, 2011. I am 24, I had just celebrated my Girlfriends birthday the night before and was in good spirits. I was sitting at my desk at work and started to receive calls from my Sister, which I couldn't answer, after a few minutes I asked her "what's up?", a few seconds later I received a text, "Brandon Died.".. My body went numb instantly, the world froze around me. I never thought this day would come that I would lose a Brother. My mind went racing, I couldn't even pick out a thought. I didn't even notice that I had text my sister "What?" two times in a row. After I received the text, and what felt like eternity, got up and called my Sister. The first think I hear was screaming from both my Sister and my Mom. I hope never to hear this again as it still brings tears to my eyes thinking about it. I couldn't understand my sister so I frantically asked for my Mother, hoping so much for it not to be true, she explained to me that my Brother had died but she didn't know how, only that he had collapsed at home and was taken to the hospital. I came out and asked to leave the office, called my other Brother and talked to him for a few minutes before I raced home. The worst drive of my life, I thought I would pass out before I reached my house, luckily I didn't. As I reached my home I walked in to find my little family in tears, the first person I embraced was my Mother followed by my Father and finally my only Sister.
My Brother who was 31, had been at home when this happened. He was not feeling well and wanted to go take a shower, his wife helped him up but they didn't get past the hall before he collapsed. His lovely Wife, Annette, took him to the shower where he became unconscious. She tried to call the emergency services but it didn't go through (they lived in a very remote part of town.) She had to go to the nearest pay phone which was six minutes away, which she ran to. I cannot even imagine having to leave your husband there when that has happened. After she came back he was still unconscious and she waited with him until the paramedics arrived. They took him to the hospital where they tried for 45 minutes to resuscitate him but he passed away.
The problem with it all was my Brother was living in Hong Kong at the time, 7,000 miles away from me. This is the most helpless I have felt in my whole life. It was only him and his Wife, they had some friends that we're there too. My Brother was diabetic and had some health issues growing up, but nothing to where I would have expected this. I know he had been sick for the last few weeks but we didn't know how it could happen. We later found out that he had a Pneumonia and also had a bad heart, his body tried so hard but in the end couldn't cope with the sickness. The horrible part is he went into the doctors a few days prior and they didn't diagnose the Pneumonia correctly, He thought it was just a cold. We wanted to bring his body to the United States to bury him but since he had a Virus they had to cremate his remains before they would send him to us.
My Brother was the kindest person I knew. He would sacrifice anything for anyone. If I was half the person he was, I would be four times the person I am. He was one of the smartest people I knew (He was a self taught computer programmer living in HK working on great things). I can't even begin to describe my Brother.
I still think about my Brother everyday, and cry half the time. My Brother was loved by SO many people from around the world, I was amazed to see how many people he had touched, the world is a darker place without him. I wish so much that I could take his place and he could still be here, I know this cannot be. I pray that he IS in a better place and that I can see him again on day.
I apologize if my writing is all over the place, everything that day feels like a Blur. I wrote a Poem for my Brother on the day of his death, which I would like to share with everyone here.
"I will never look at death the same,
That fateful day, it finally came.
So young, so new.
this is something we did not expect, or knew.
My brother is gone,
But my memories will forever live on.
I loved you and still do with all of my heart.
This is true from the beginning of time, from the start.
I know you are safe, and in good company all around,
But I still miss your lovely face, your spirit and your sound.
This will be dark times ahead,
For many tears I will shed,
Not for bad memories,
But for memories that will never come,
So hard for not everyone, but only few, only some.
My prayers are all about you,
Remembering all the things you would do,
Play Nintendo on Saturdays,
Play some magic the gathering,
These times and memories I will cherish,
For my thoughts of you will never perish.
These are my words, words that have no weight,
To how my heart feels so heavy, it belongs on a crate.
My heart feels so heavy for the one that I lost,
We all know it came at such a great cost.
But my words have no weight, for these feelings that his loss will create.
I love my big brother, my brother of blood.
I have to stay strong, no tears, no flood.
My soul wants to weep, so exhausted from pain.
But I need to learn from my big brother, how to achieve and how to gain.
His words I will pass on to others,
He was one of only two brothers.
So again, here's tribute to you,
to all the kind things you would do.
I love you big brother,
I give you love, until I see you, adieu."