My BROTHER Tom, my best friend

by Rick
(Syracuse, NY)

June 12th, 2013, the worst day of my life. I was in my office at work and got a call from my Aunt who was obviously upset about something. She said, I feel like I have to tell you something because I can't hold it in and wait for you to find out. She told me my brother Tom was in a motorcycle accident and had died. I was instantly in tears and yelling NO and dropped to the floor. Tom was my only brother, me being 31 and him 28. I have lost a lot of family members in my life but this one is the most pain I have ever felt.
Growing up we were always super tight. My parents are the best in the world and kept us together no matter what would happen. If we fought as kids we would have to sit on the couch and hold hands until we were laughing again. We would do everything together. We would get all the same things as kids and share everything. When we grew up he got taller than me, better looking than me, and just all around cooler. I know I taught him many things, and paved the way for a lot of things he did in life, but all the while, I looked up to him. Moving into teen years and adulthood we would hit rough patches here and there. When it came to the last two women that were in his life which spanned about ten broken up with and the next he married...they always tried to separate us and try to make sure he spent as little time as possible around me. I really struggled with that. Even when I moved away after college for a job, moved back for a few years, and moved away again for my recent job, I wish I could have seen him everyday and was able to hang out with him all the time. It got very hard to see him the past five years. We were basically down to just family functions a handful of times a year. I hated that because I missed him a lot. The last time I hung out with him when it was just the two of us, I actually mentioned that we needed to start to make time to see each other. We never got that chance.
Tom leaves behind of wife of almost three years and a son who will be two this December. Our entire family is heartbroken. Tom was the one who could light up any room he walked into in any situation, even if it was a bunch of strangers. He was the man, and I love him so much. It has almost been a month since he was killed and I still can't fathom the fact that I will never get to see him again or hang out. I will never have anyone that close to me in my life. We could be watching something on TV three hundred miles away from each other, not knowing that we were watching the same thing, and text each other at the same exact time about a movie line or Seinfeld episode that was the exact same comment. I will miss little things like that forever. I don't know what to do with myself besides go through the motions and take care of my wife and son and just call and check on friends and family. But at the same time, I can't help myself feel better so how can I help them. There are really no words to describe my grief and I also know in my head that I haven't even processed the reality of it all, and that there are worse emotional times to come. That scares me and I don't have a clue what to do about it. I miss my brother so very much and the worst thing to think about is that there is nothing I can do to change the situation.

Comments for My BROTHER Tom, my best friend

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Nov 29, 2013
I am so sorry
by: Anonymous

I just wanted to say I relate to this very real and shocking pain you are living with each day. I see your Mom wrote back to you, and I also feel terrible and pray for her as well. My baby brother (29 years 6 days old)was just killed in a motor vehicle accident on Nov 15 this year. He leaves behind his wife, three beautiful kids, a baby sister, myself and 2 udderly broken parents. I'm not sure that anyone ever truly "heals", but we will learn to live. Our brothers would want us to live. It is almost unbearable to think of his birthday next year, or Christmas or our Canadian Thanksgiving next year.... I am sure you are in the same boat, and just wanted to let you know that when I read your story I felt compelled to let you know that even though I do not know you, nor are we in the same country, I send my love, prayers, and condolences to all of your family. I hope you can build some coping skills and can enjoy the rest of your life until you meet with Tom again.

Nov 20, 2013
Your brother, my son
by: Mom

Dear Rick,
I don't know if you will see this, hopefully you will. I know that I tell you all of the time, and I guess I can't say it enough that I love you and Thomas more than life. I have the blessing and honor to be your Mother. God couldn't have blessed me and Dad with more than he did when he gave us the two of you. I am writing this with tears flowing freely as they do every day now. I want to help you and yet I know that we all must walk this path of grief in our own way.
The day Thomas left us changed us forever. How do we ever smile again with such overwhelming pain? Everyone keeps telling me that the days to come will be very hard, especially the Holidays and Tom's birthday and all the special days we remember. Every day was special that we got to spend together. I read recently that there is something we need to try to be able to heal a little. To close our eyes and picture Thomas looking at us with a smile (as he always did) and to sincerely ask him, with all of the love that we have for him in our hearts, if it is okay for us to have joy and peace in our hearts again and to be able to smile. Then listen and realize what he would say. We know he would say that with all his heart, he wants us to smile again and keep loving and living. And somehow we need to put that into action and live the way he did. Just like you said the day we had to say goodbye- for all of us to remember how he lived and try to do our best to emulate that. I am also trying to remember what your cousin Jim said, "In order to truly honor your brother's life, we have to live ours."
I can't even believe I am writing these words for this reason at this moment. My heart will not accept the reality of our world. We are broken. From where does our strength come? I know that we would not make it through without God. I know he knows how very confused and shattered we are at His decision. And I pray that we can find an answer someday. I pray for all of us who have lost our precious sons and cherished brothers. Why does this keep happening? We need them here with us. I wish our "whole" family could live as one with love for each other. I didn't think it could hurt more, but it does when we don't get to be a part of his son's life. I pray that it can happen one day. I don't know what else to do but pray that we will be allowed to teach him what Thomas is all about. Dad and I will always be here for you. I love you bud!

Sep 17, 2013
My Brother, My best friend
by: Anonymous

Rick, I am very sorry to hear about your brother. I have a very similar story to you. 18th of June 2013, worst day of my life. I lost my older brother... He was only 25 yrs old, and i know exactly how you are feeling. its the worse feeling and the worst pain in the world...... Like you, i have also lost a few member of my family but this is the hardest....
My brother was studying abroad and he went back to visit my mother for his summer holiday back home, sadly he passed away in a tragic car accident and I also heard this news from my aunt.

Its soooo hard and the pain is unbearable, I lost My dad when I was a 1yr old baby and my mum brought us up on her own... Its been very hard for all of us especially my mother, its been 23 yrs since my dad passed away and my mother never recovered from it and death of my brother has devastated all of us... they say time is a healer but it hasnt been for me so brother's birthday is coming up soon and I miss him so much

we were so close to each other and its so hard knowing I wont be hearing his voce again... he was young but a very happy and sociable person, he gathered 1000 people for his funeral... I just miss hime so much and know exactly how you feel

Jul 15, 2013
A missing friend
by: Anonymous

I lost my brother Ray on July 7th, with no warning. The pain I feel is deep and I realize that a piece of my history is lost with his passing. He was my best friend and I did take him for granted at times but his hospitalization brought us closer and we determined to try to really listen to each other. We had plans to take a vacation and visit family back east and now I can't believe the pain of this final parting. I didn't get a chance to say goodby and can understand how that must grieve you. I try talking to him and hope he can hear me and know I will keep him in my heart and thoughts. Perhaps if you speak out loud, things that you want him to know, it might give you a voice, a way of communicating with your brother,

Jul 13, 2013
Best Friend

I lost my sister in May. She was my best friend also. So strange I had 5 sisters, but she and I were very close. I lost my husband 3 years ago, still not over him. We were together 45 years. I miss him every day. My mother died in 1991 on this date July 13. Let's all hold to God for our individual needs.

Jul 13, 2013
thank you for comment responses to my brother tom
by: Rick

I just want to say thank you to the people that took the time within the last few days to comment on my story and tell me a little bit of theirs. It means a lot to know that there are others out there that understand completely the loss that I have experienced and can share their thoughts and feelings about it.

Jul 12, 2013
Bridging our pain
by: Another sibling

Hi there,
I am so sorry for your loss. I can very much relate to how your feeling and what your going through because on October 26th 2012, I lost my little brother. He was only 19 and he was drowned.This incident changed my life forever. Its been seven months and it still feels like yesterday and the constant emptiness always haunts me. Every day has been a struggle and there were few moments where I felt like doing nothing but then I thought this is not something my brother would want for me. I am trying to gather myself by making his memories my strength. Life can be cruel but we have to fight it back and don't let it make us weaker. I had a lot of people telling me to be strong when I lost him but hardly any one who would help me how to be one or tell me what does it really mean to be strong in this situation? but with each passing day, I think I am learning that being strong means to gather your self for the one gone and also for those who are there with you now. Cry if you need to, ask for help if you need one, this is the time you need the most support. Take care

Another Sibling

Jul 12, 2013
I hear you
by: Diego

Rick I feel shock reading at reading your story, I also lost my little brother one year ago, he was only 26, I’m 29, he passed away from a freak cardiac arrhythmia…there’s a lot of similarities in our stories, by brother was the coolest person on earth, as your brother he was the light of our home, he had huge amount of friends everybody love him….I wish I could tell you time made it easier, but it’s not, it feels like yesterday, not a day goes by without thinking of my brother, I can tell you that after a year I can function better, I’m back doing day-to-day activities as I used to, I started going out again, but the pain is always running on the background, I love my brother too much, I don’t think I will ever be completely normal again. Rick there’s nothing I can said to make you feel better, just want to let you know that I truly understand you, and that you are not alone on this journey. If you want take a look at the post I wrote about my brother. This is the link:

Jul 12, 2013
Your Brother Tom
by: Anonymous

I know your grief, because I lost my son, age 31, just a few months ago. He had a younger brother and sister, and I know they are hurting inside. Our family is not whole anymore, and family functions will never be the same. He too lit up the room. I don't know what to say, but you'll just have to get through the grief. It will take some time, but remember that grief is love for that person. You'll have to be strong, because you still want to be the best person for your family. Let yourself self cry and remember when you need to. Its very hard...

Jul 11, 2013
Supposed to say my BROTHER
by: Rick

I tried to fix this title...It's supposed to say my BROTHER...

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