Monday, April 30, 2007

Ode to a Graduate

Chris Galvin came home on leave and came to Springfield this past weekend. Galvin spent the last 88 days or so cruising the West Pacific’s mean streets. Having him home meant he was safe and out of harm’s way. Shana, McFarland, Ira, Galvin and I went to Lincoln’s New Salem Saturday. It was a really nice day and I enjoyed a few hours hanging out with dear friends. One friend wasn’t there and I wish he had been.

John Kennealy graduates from WIU in two weeks. This is going to be a special day for me because (barring anything going wrong) I will get to return a four year favor. I am looking forward to seeing my best friend walk across the stage. He will finally get the degree for which he’s worked his ass off. I know John is looking forward to May 12th. I’m stoked for him.

I’ve known John since his first semester at WIU when he came to SGA as the very young junior SGA senator from Thompson Hall. In contrast, I was the most senior SGA Senator, the Speaker Pro Tempore and the chairman of the Senate’s most powerful committee (you knew I’d throw that in there). He had the talent and the ambition, but I didn’t see it at first. Why should I? I knew and controlled everything.

I was wrong. 100% wrong. I saw this young man go balls to the wall after the things he wanted. I was impressed. We became friends that semester. Since then, we’ve been through a lot. I watched him become the first freshman in SGA history to chair a standing committee, then saw him betrayed by people he considered friends. He’s won and lost elections, chaired committees, represented students, led a party and then an entire chamber, partied with friends and was always there when the phone rang.

John called me his friend, brother and mentor a few weeks ago. I am honored to be all three of those things.

John is my best friend. I respect him immensely and love him like a younger brother. I’ve said that thousands of times, but it’s true. We fight like siblings and John always knows what to say to put me in my place. We’re polar opposites on some things (baseball being a big one), but are lockstep on so many others. I know that I can trust him implicitly and that his heart is always in the right place.

He has stood right beside me through the good and bad times. I pray that I will always be there for him. As he closes the book on this chapter of his life, a new chapter begins. I’m honored to have been a part of this chapter. I’m looking forward to being a part of the next.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home