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  • Writer's pictureGerald Tindal

Day 637: Birthdays and Celebrations

Updated: Aug 14, 2020


Today is May 13, 2020. You would have been 30 years old.

Grief is a terrible master. Equally dire on both sides. Unable to move forward and incapable of moving backward. Stationary while time moves on. Changes on a daily basis with memories stuck like frozen pictures reminding us that time stopped on August 14, 2018. Aging is no longer possible when everyday gets older. Mornings continue to be mournings with the realization that nothing changed since the last daily check in with reality. Dreams no longer effectively separating one day from the next; just blurring the line and allowing brief respite.

Yes, we continue to honor you in all ways, large and small. We continue to think about the entire passage of days since you were with us. The micro-second bursts are perhaps the toughest to encounter, much like wave particles that gain momentum. Or ocean currents that grow and hit shore, too late to go quietly and destined to crash.

We celebrate your life rather than your birthday to remind us every moment that you are/were real. That you are/were a powerful influence. That we are/will be strong. Your presence continues in the program you aspired to be part of and where you were just hitting stride and cadence, the cruelty of which makes your death so difficult to accept, comprehend, and understand. We wrote the following words for the 2020 graduation ceremony of the Sports Product Management program on March 16; Hunter was eloquent in reading them along with his own tribute.

From the Tindal Family: We could not be here today but we plan to be mindful of this day, today and in future years. About 10 years ago, the family dedicated inscribed pavers to all members of our family; they are located in the College of Education courtyard, outside the new Hedco building. The paver for KT reads: He leads us by exampleA Son from Eugene.

This KT Leadership award in the Sports Product Management Program is not about getting others to follow. Rather, it is given to someone who displays leadership, which comes from within the person. Someone who is passionate in pursuit of goals, willing to not only work hard but also collaborate with others, respectful of people, and strong in the face of adversity with a whole lot of grit (a big part of KT’s application statement). The SPM program brings out the best in its students and builds these characteristics into its course work, field-based activities, and internships. This program helped define KT and this award is aptly given to the student who exemplifies this leadership from within.

So that’s it buddy. Just a note that you are with us. Your strength was not just physical. It is/was spiritual. And the three of us – your mom, Sev-Beanz, and I – will stay strong for you.

The three of us together.

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