See those 2 web addresses up there? If you look at them closely, you’ll notice that they are from two different newspapers: The Washington Post and the Roanoke (VA) Times.
Look closer and you’ll see this:
Lifestory&PersonID=124289351 / Lifestory&PersonID= 124286857
I remember enough from my programming days to recognize that PersonID is a key to a record in some database somewhere. In this case, it’s a database of death notices, and those both reference death notices for Eric. Two different PersonID numbers….suggests redundancy, duplicate data stored in multiple data sets, maybe?
But look even closer. See anything else??
Where are the friends and family who are hurting now because he’s no longer with them? Where is the list of accomplishments he gathered in his short time here? What were the things he loved to do, where did he go when he needed to get away somewhere and just, BE? What were his favorite foods? Was he a cat person, a dog person, or maybe a horse person? Who was this person? Who IS this person?
Everyone we come into contact with, every day, is so much more than a Lifestory&PersonID.
I’m going to try harder to remember that. To find out these things about the people I love, the people I’ve known for my whole life, and the people I’m just now getting to now. And I hope they would do the same for me.
Because we are all more than a number, more than a PersonID.
And when I leave this earth, I would like to know that my life made a difference. That people will remember me for who I was, what I did, and not just that I was a PersonID.
If you had to sum up your entire life into one sentence, what would it be?