My youngest sister lost her brother yesterday. He was my brother, too, but my sister and he spent most of their lives together, so the pain and sorrow at his passing weighs far more heavily on her than it does on me. I am, nonetheless, quite saddened by his death, for I was involved in his life when he was a baby and until about age three. I helped take care of him during my mid to late teens and only reconnected with him about four years ago. His was a hard and difficult life. Developmentally disabled, he lost his father (my father also) when he was about five years old and experienced hardship the rest of his life. His mother struggled to provide for him and his sister and was never seen or heard from again after leaving to go into the "bush" to make money, leaving his sister (then barely a teenager) to take care of him. Addie, as he was called, had two passions - dray carts and Banco wine, and it was the latter which, no doubt, was instrumental in his passing. Last year as I was visiting his sister (my sister too) I found him passed out in a nearby ditch. He had had too much to drink. Luckily, the ditch was dry and barely had any water in it. This time, though, our dear Addie was not so lucky. It had been raining heavily the past two days, and he was found enveloped in the comforting embrace of the waters in a trench. Addie is now at peace from the hardship and turmoil that was most of his life.
[photo art by Ric Couchman]