Losing Friends

December 1, 2021

On November 15th, 2020, Kelly died. One month later on December 16th, 2020, her husband and my good friend Rick Nelson died. Rick had been a footballer in Canada, traveled widely geographically, intellectually, and musically, becoming a reporter on the music scene for Northwest newspapers. I came to know him at the off-leash dog park where we shared the joy in our dogs and a wide range of intellectual discussions.

Rick as a footballer in Canada
Rick as I came to know him at the off-leash dog park in more recent years.
Babe, carrying her frizbee

December 1, 2023 (continuing with the ‘facebook memory’ two years later)

Between those dates when Kelly and Rick died, Rick asked us if we wanted to take his dog Babe or he would have to have her put down. He was going into the hospital with no prospect of getting out. Babe was a 13- or 14-year-old half Chocolate Lab half Weimaraner who loved catching her frisbee.

Now a year later she still catches her frisbee when Kay throws it when we first get to the off-leash dog park and then walks around with it until we leave. After six months she finally settled in to seeming to accept us as her legitimate owners although she never again slept in her bed that Rick gave us or ate out of her yellow dog dish. But she stuck with the ‘traditions’ Rick and Kelly had insisted on, like not getting on couches. We are no longer just a holding place till Rick gets back; she seems to like us. She’s a pretty amazing dog.

November 6, 2023

Once more my ‘facebook memories’ bring the past up before my eyes. Rick’s dog Babe who joined Lesa as part of our family died last Thursday; she was seventeen. Lesa is on her last legs now too. Good friends cannot be replaced. They leave a hole that resonates.

December 1, 2023

We had to have Lesa put down on November 11, 2023; she could no longer walk. She had raced 166 times before we adopted her at age five. She was the sweetest and swiftest dog. She ran for pleasure, not for sticks or balls but just for the joy of running; watching her was a pleasure for everyone who watched.

Losing marvelous such friends is hard.  I am just now beginning to cope.

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