39 Years Ago...
As my Millburn High contemporaries may remember, on September 27, 1980, Steve Cahn died in a motorcycle accident. Some of us lost a best friend; our soccer team lost a teammate; our junior year lost a classmate. For me, the effect of Steven's death could not be overstated. While I'd had a grandfather and an uncle pass a year or so earlier, Steven's death was a seminal moment. From that day forward, I would understand all-too-personally that life was arbitrarily unfair. That young people--kids my age--sometimes die. That my parents would not always be able to shield me from tragedy. They were painful lessons for a fifteen year old. Today, thirty-nine years later, I wonder how so much time could have passed. Those were halcyon days of my youth and, damn, did we and our friends have a good time. Steven was at the center of that. He was a special person, a loyal friend, fun-loving, physically strong, and, unfortunately, at times too much of a risk-taker. I have thought about the life he missed out on. I sometimes wonder what might have happened to our friendship (to all of our friendships) had he lived. However, grasping for answers is futile. Instead, he remains in my heart. He lives on in my memories. Surrounded by our friends, working on his moped, tools strewn about the driveway, The Cars' "My Best Friend's Girl" blaring from a cassette player. I miss you, Steven. You remain thought of, and loved, by me and others. I trust you are at peace.
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Alfred C. Martino
Updates from everyday life as seen by me