Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Bad news, bad day, bad luck

When you go to work on a Monday morning you do not expect to be met with bad news. Even so I found myself listening as a colleague explained that another colleague 'C' had been involved in a serious car accident and was in hospital with head injuries and multiple fractures. Apparently his car came off the road and hit a tree in foul weather. He was sedated after a 4 hour operation so we all rallied around and sent a card, thinking it would be nice for it to be there when he woke up.

When you go to work on a Tuesday morning you do not expect to be met with bad news. Even so I found myself listening as a colleague explained that C had been pronounced brain dead and taken off the ventilator. It is thought that it is only a matter of time before he stops breathing. It took me right back to when my niece was hit by a car and died of head injuries. I remember waiting at the hospital...

I first met C when I joined the present team at work. He was friendly, approachable and was happy to show me the ropes. He put up with my endless stupid questions with good humour, enjoyed a good joke, was witty and clever and was a genuinely nice guy. We weren't close but I counted him as a work friend. The news has been a shock.

A new member of the team asked if C had children. When told that he did not, he answered 'Oh, that's not so bad then'. I was angry though I held my tongue. I take the point that there are no children involved who will grow up without their dad but there are his parents, family and friends who will miss him terribly. A person is far more than their ability to be a parent and their worth to this world should not be confined to one such aspect.

C is just 36 years old. My thoughts are with his family.

Update: C has passed away in hospital. The police are appealing for witnesses to the accident.

21 comments:

Mar said...

So sorry to read about your colleague, BK. Wish I had the right words to say...

bunnygirl said...

It's tragic, and whether or not he has dependents has nothing to do with it. I'll be hoping for a miracle, even though I know the odds aren't good.

kenju said...

It's horrible for those left behind, and you are so right to day that whether one has kids or not, is not the issue. What a senseless way to go.

pink dogwood said...

so sorry to hear of your loss - that was very insensitive what that other person said about him not having any kids. But I have heard that so many times in other context - like when a couple gets divorced and they have no kids then people think it is not so bad.

Susan Helene Gottfried said...

Ugghhh.... what a flashback that you just don't need.

Not that anyone does. What a nightmare for the family -- and for his friends. They're every bit as affected as kids would have been. Maybe even more.

Melody said...

What a terrible start to your week. How utterly terrible for his family and I am sorry to read your words.

Bob-kat said...

Thanks everyone :)

Pink Dogwood: I know. People said that to me when I go divorced. Like that was supposed to bring me comfort!

SHG: I was on the verge of tears for most of the day. It took me right back to that hospital room. I agree with you as well, I think it must be worse for adults too in a way as there is so much shared history. Kids seem so much more able to bounce back, especially when they are very young. I wish I had that ability back sometimes.

R. Sherman said...

Our prayers and thoughts for his family.

Dianne said...

oh my, he was the age of my son

I'm so sorry

Linda said...

I'm so sorry to hear of the loss of your friend. You are right, the comment made, while it was intended to "soothe", was quite callous. No matter that there aren't children. C was someone's child...children aren't supposed to die before parents. C was someone's grandchild, or brother, or uncle...most of all, C was a friend...to many, I'm guessing.

My prayers are with his family, and with you as you go through another tragic loss.

Nikki-ann said...

I'm so sorry to hear about C. It's always a shock when somebody goes so early in life. My thoughts are with his friends, family & colleagues.

Zeus said...

I completely agree with you, Bobkat: Though children may be one mark we as people leave upon this earth, there are other ways for people to demonstrate that they have lived. I wouldn't have liked the coworker's comment either. I am so sorry for your loss, and I hope that during his funeral, people remember and honor the lasting impact his life had upon them.

d.challener roe said...

Even if it's not someone close to you that certainly counts as a bad week. And while not having kids does to some degree lessen the impact on others it certainly doesn't make it "no so bad".

NetChick sent me today...

Bob-kat said...

D. Challener Roe,

Thanks so much for popping by and taking the trouble to comment. I appreciate your view but I don't think the impact on those who miss C is lessened at all. I watched grown men fight back tears when the news came through.

Carmi said...

What a sad, sad loss. I am so sorry for you, for your colleagues and for his family.

When I was 14, I was a passenger in a huge car accident. The police don't know how we walked away from the wreck. I remember the feeling of sheer terror I felt as the car initially lost control, as I realized we were about to crash, what it felt like to know this could be it.

It hurts me deeply when I hear of a young life snuffed out in this way. There's no fairness, no means to understand why, no words that can ever make it better.

(And in my experience, there's always someone who'll doubtless say something so egregiously obtuse that you wonder if they ever had any manners at all. It's like clockwork.)

Michael Manning said...

My heart broke at this news Bob Kat. Please know I have this young man in my prayers most immediately. I am sorry, my friend. You are also in my prayers too. I know how much you care.

Bob-kat said...

Carmi,

I am glad you made it through that awful experience so that we could enjoy your friendship today. That is partly what is so upsetting about C. So many people will miss out on knowing him as really was a great guy and his friends and family have had all future experiences taken from them if you know what I mean?

As for that persons comment. On Friday we had an even more insensitive one. Someone else from the team came over to our section and waxed lyrical about how you never expect to know someone who is killed in a car crash but the odds mean that it 'must happen to someone'. Some people are so insensitive as you say.

rashbre said...

Sorry to hear of the loss of your work colleague and of the sad impact to all around.

Gwynne said...

Add me to the list of those praying for you and your team, for C's family and friends. Such a tragic loss. It happens far too often and those who make insensitive comments have probably not experienced a close family member's loss as you have. So sorry, Bobkat.

OldOldLady Of The Hills said...

Oh My Dear....Gow terrible...! And only 36 years old...! I am so very sorry for yur loss and for his parents and all of his friends....And you are so right about this loss being just as terrible and heartbreaking, though he did not have children....Anyone and Evrryone who knew him and loved him, is nursing a broken heart.

moon said...

My condolences for the loss of your work friend...It's so shocking when someone is lost so quickly and without warning. They have been riped from us..taken away..no explainations, hard to comprehend. We are also reminded how fragile life can be...Have we told those we care for (I LOVE YOU) lately.