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this much i know is true

best friends in atlantic city, early 1960's

fifty-three years ago these three were boys and became the very best of friends. little did they know back then that they would not only forge lifelong friendships, a brotherhood in the truest sense of the word, but that they would create a legacy along the way.

this is my father (far right) and his two oldest and closest friends. they have been inseperable since long before i can remember. they are my family, born not of blood but out of sharing years and years of life together and a kind of bond that is extremely precious and rare. they created something beyond themselves, a rich and joyful tapestry of past and present, memories and traditions, friendship and love, that continues to weave together the lives of everyone in thier wake... i feel incredibly blessed to be one of those people. so many times i have sat in a room filled with this tribe, and felt overwhelmed and awed with gratitude. i couldn't imagine my life without them having been a part of it.

this past week we had to say goodbye to one. though he was not well for some time, the loss of someone close always takes you by surprise and knocks the wind out of you. it makes you take stock, reminds you of what is most important, and offers you another day to get it right. i've learned so much from these men, about the meaning of family, about the virtue of loyalty, about the essence of living a life meant to be enjoyed and especially shared.

it unquestionably is the end of something significant and irreplaceable; a life, an era, a chapter of a story that though changed will continue to be told. i now know that long after these three have gone on, thier legacy will persist through everyone they've shined upon and encircled with the gift of thier friendship.