My Cousin Josh


This is an early-80s picture of almost all the cousins on my dad’s side of the family. I’m in the front in the overall-shorts, and Josh is in the red shirt (to my right). My cousin Tim (in the Donald Duck shirt) uploaded this picture, and I’m very glad he did–it’s a great picture that brings back many memories.

I was very surprised and saddened to hear that my cousin Josh had passed away this past weekend. He was still very young–only 36. Here’s the site about him from the funeral home; it’s got a nice video with some pictures. It’s difficult to put all the thoughts and emotions that one has at a time like this into words, so I’ll just put some thoughts out there.

On my dad’s side of the family, my brother, my sister, and I are all collectively the youngest “kids,” so I always thought that my cousins were cooler and bigger than me and I looked up to them accordingly. They lived on a farm and/or in Florida, which I just couldn’t compete with. So even though I wasn’t that much younger, I still have memories of being a bit amazed by them. I remember talking with Josh once when we were probably teenagers, and he said he was going to get a Dr. Dre CD. Then, just a few months later, he said he had been listening to a Metallica CD. Obviously, you can’t help but admire a cousin like that.

Ever since I moved to Costa Rica about 8 years ago I’ve not seen as much of my extended family, and Josh was in that category, unfortunately. However, I was able to at least chat with him a month or two ago on Facebook, and he was as friendly and nice as always. In our chat we just did some general catching up–nothing that special, but still nice nonetheless. I was very glad to make contact with him again, and mentioned how hopefully the next time I was in Colorado, he and Angela would finally get to meet each other, and he’d also be able to meet Will. I feel really bad that that didn’t happen, but on the other hand, at least we did get to talk. How many times have we all heard people regret that they didn’t reach out to just say hi to someone they love when they had the chance, only to lose that person shortly thereafter? So even though I didn’t get a chance to say goodbye, I’m very happy I got to say hi one last time. And if you have a person like that in your life, who it’d be easy to say hi to, but you just don’t because you think you’ll do it later when the time is more convenient, don’t wait–just say hi. You’ll be glad you did.

Josh, rest in peace. I’ll miss you. We’ll all miss you.

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3 thoughts on “My Cousin Josh

  1. My heart goes out to you & the rest of Josh’s family. May memories like those in this post (which is so well written and sweet) continue to bring everyone some peace. Sounds like Josh was an especially good guy.

  2. I feel sorry about your loss Ryan. Thanks for reminding us all that we should not wait in expressing our feelings of love, friendship and appreciation to our loved ones, family and friends. Take care.

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