A year ago today, my brother Steve lost his battle with cancer. I think of him often. Not of how he was that day when he let go of the pain and left this world, but rather of his dry sense of humor, his laughter, his funny out-of-the-blue telephone calls. Though he spent the last twenty years living 1800 miles away, he was always there.  Occasionally, he’d make a trip home and we’d visit and laugh. It always felt like we were kids again and that nothing had really changed. On holidays, he’d usually call Mom and we’d all get caught up.

It’s been a strange year. No telephone calls. No visits. No Steve. It’s still hard to wrap my head around the fact that I’ll never see him again, never hear his voice again. Still, the heart remembers. Tonight I rode my bicycle ten miles from my office to my home. It’s a wonderful ride through the gorgeous Riverside State Park. As I pedaled along, I thought of my brother. I remembered how one summer he worked a paper route just so he could buy himself a brand new Schwinn bicycle. It was a special bike, a hot item for kids his age. It was blue with monkey-bar handlebars and a banana seat. He was so very cool!

I hate that cancer took my brother’s life but I’m glad that he was in my life. I’m glad for the memories.