The Legendary Stefan James
Typically stories about my family center on Stefan. Tales of bee stings to private places that make most squirm, peeing on a stranger’s sandaled foot to the chagrin of a young lady, her muscle-bound boyfriend, and my gentle father, and dropping shorts in front of a loaded school bus. He has lived things that we only do in our dreams and nightmares.
He had a way of bringing us together. We learned to say “I love you” to each other regularly because of Stefan; we remembered how to hug, too. He was a nurturer: caring for others was his mission in life. He saved lives through his lifeguarding; he just simply made so many others happy by his unassuming ways and sweet, self-conscious smile.
He was the most hard-working person I have ever met in my years filled with self-motivators and high achievers. He was well-intentioned and sweet-hearted, brave and giving. He was confused and soul-searching, sometimes muddled, not always happy. He was quiet, often times a mumbler, often times perky-almost bubbly for a 170 pound boy. Stefan was not wise, but his gentleness and kindness overflowed. He was cute and nervous, yet brave about so many things. He was talented and clever in a reclusive way. Even as a teenager he had camping and fire-building skills that made grown men jealous. He was a brilliant photographer and never endingly giving. He was heart-achingly good, oh-so-good, the best of people you could ever be so lucky to know.
In lieu of the loss of my spectacular brother and what he regularly contributed to this difficult world, please spread kindness, nurture a plant or tree in his name, and help those who have needs that you can attend to. He would want that and that will best keep his memory and address the cavernous void in community service that developed Saturday April 28th at 6:50 am in the morning when my 28-year-old brother was hit by a train and killed.
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