On the homefront

“You killed my father. Prepare to die.”

I can still hear Randy Young slipping the words of a fictional Spaniard through his Southwest Missouri accent. He and I on stage in a small-town production of The Princess Bride was the not the stuff of great theatre, but it was fun.

Randy died this past weekend. I’m still mining for details, but I’m told it was not a happy ending.

I hadn’t seen Randy since the days we acted and played softball together. I heard he had gone on to ride bulls and act as a rodeo clown for a living. I thought many years after I had last seen him that his choice of careers suited him well.

The e-mail that fell into my box Monday morning hit my heart instead of my eyes. Randy was never one of those people you’d expect to go like he did.

I cannot know what happened over the last eleven years. In my eyes, Randy still looks like he did in the obituary picture. It was an old one and made me wonder if more people wanted to remember him as he looked in a baseball cap.

Brad Willis

Brad Willis is a writer based in Greenville, South Carolina. Willis spent a decade as an award-winning broadcast journalist. He has worked as a freelance writer, columnist, and professional blogger since 2005. He has also served as a commentator and guest on a wide variety of television, radio, and internet shows.

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