The truth is that I hadn't intended to go to Congress. I'm at the latter end of the 20somethings, and though I've always enjoyed congress, I figured my Congress years were behind me, when, out of nowhere, I was invited to be part of a Young Adult Ministries group that you'll understand a lot more about after Congress. And while I don't have to go to Congress, it was important (in other words I was easily swayed). I actually started to get excited. I'm staying with some great friends from the great white north (i.e. New Brunswick and British Columbia, Canada, eh), and I'm riding down with some of my favorite people from my church. So, as I said, I was growing excited.
And then came the loss of one of my very favorite people and friends, Cory McCool. Everyone who knew Cory loved him. He was special. Cory McCool was my friend. And my neighbor actually. Growing up Cory, and the entire McCool family lived directly across the street. He and I once stood in our front windows and waved across the street to one another. I remember one time when Cory got a new drum set. He said, 'stay right here, I'll go inside and you'll still be able to hear me.' And sure enough, Cory ran in, and played with all his strength. And then in the middle of a great roll, he suddenly stopped, walked outside, and with a sheepish expression said, "mom's on the phone." Cory then went on to describe the melodious sound of his drumset, since he wasn't able to play it for me :). It was actually Cory who showed me how to shoot a basketball for the very first time. That's right, Cory McCool walked across the street and played basketball with me.
But everyone knew Cory and loved him, and when we grew up, and both moved off Madison street, I was sure Cory would forget about the little girl who he used to wave to from the window. But he never did. When he started dating Jina, he introduced me like that, "Jina, this is my friend Sarah, we lived across the street from one another!" Years later when Mylon came along, he introduced me the same way.
Man, I loved Cory. He just made everyone feel special. We all thought we were his best friend.
My boss, at the church where I work, actually is Cory's best friend, from childhood. Robby Emery has been my boss for 9 years last month. Monday morning, after his best friend is buried, Robby will be leaving us for a new position in Texas. So this was my last week as Robby Emery's assistant, and it was this week that his best friend, and my favorite neighbor passed away. I hope that this week I did the very best work I've ever done. I hope so. For Robby, and for Cory.
This was an exhausting week. The world feels less without Cory in it. Like there's less love, and less friendship.
Tonight was the funeral. And wow, I have never in my life been to such a funeral. Not ever. A funeral where his beautiful, beautiful wife (who hugged me and asked if I was ok), danced and worshipped, because that's the way Cory would have wanted it. His whole church worshipped. Cory would've been so pleased.
There's no one else like him in all the world. I love you Cory.