Saturday, October 25, 2014

Dearly Departed Drawings ~ {day 298} ~ Trees and Tents with Neil

Neil passed on a beautiful day, just before midnight.  Born on August 1st, 1982.  The school year was just ending and the boys were playing in the creek with a friend that afternoon.  Screams filled the air.  Neil was under the water and not visible, the fire company sent divers into the creek.  It took them 20 minutes to find him.  20 minutes under the water.  He was life flighted to the hospital where his family was told after being in the water so long he would probably have brain damage.  The elephant in the room now was the decision to set him free, liberate his soul or keep him here.  Neil made his own decision and passed just before midnight of his own accord.  June 12, 1990. 

Left: Neil - Right: Ben

Neil and Bens mother, Hank (Henriette), is like my second mother.  We've shared recipes, gardening, child rearing, arts and crafts, I could go on and on.   I was instantly accepted as family from the moment we met.  My husband introduced us, they were well acquainted long before I came along.  I was shown around, given the tour and proclaimed to be "the one" for my husband after visiting a few times.  Nestled in the beauty of the mountains, among campgrounds and forests is Camp.  I could live there all summer.  Surrounded by fields of queen annes lace, soft, squishy moss covered ground, roaring bonfires at night and laughter throughout the night as fireflies light in the fields.  A large pond on the property to swim, fish and ice skate upon in the winter.  Full of love, acceptance, kindness, giving, trust, is the owners - Hank and Dave.  We are like family.  I knew when Hank mentioned Neil to me - that I would draw him.  I had heard whispers and hushed stories of Bens brother - hearing it finally from Hank in the midst of my 365 days of drawing which led to day seven of starting a portrait for an acquaintance - I had decided then and there I would draw Neil.

This is what I do now when I can spare an hour. Dearly Departed Drawings.  I will never stop till I can no longer hold a pencil.  I love to draw and portraits are my favorite.  What better way to remember our loved ones, often only a photograph remains alongside our memories with an occasional memento.  There will always be death, it's part of life.  The year is almost over but I am just getting started.

Accidental death may be the epitome of evil. 
It is senseless. There is no one to blame. 
There is no way to think it through.

You can read about the beginning of my journey with Neil here.

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