My first feelings toward you right now are anger and confusion. I have to ask, what were you thinking you stupid asshole?! You had friends and a loving family and you did exciting things in beautiful places. Somewhere along your path you decided to risk all those things by doing drugs? I can’t understand why and maybe you couldn’t either. I’m guessing it was out of boredom, or a drunken mistake, or to be accepted by some woman. Maybe you had some inner turmoil that was just too much? Why?, is a stupid question that doesn’t help. I’m so angry with you for the choices you made that put you here. I’m so angry at you for causing pain and sadness in people who care about you. I’m angry and confused, but I love you and I forgive you. I’m sorry you suffered and I couldn’t help. I’ll always have hypothetical thoughts about what could have been different and what could have been done. I’ll always remember the best of times with you. You were a great cousin and friend and more like a brother. You could do anything in the woods and the rivers. You kicked through the thickest brush with me and shot straight and drank hard and built the hottest fires. Adventures were made with you everywhere we went. So many things we learned we learned together. Fighting, and baseball cards, and fishing, and hunting, and blowing shit up were just things that helped create a bond between us. We were the meanest mother fuckers in the jungle, living the American dream. You put down Republicans and Christians with humor and had goofy phrases like throwing acorns at battleships. We laughed like drunkards on crazy nights and very nearly got into some serious troubles and it was great times. You were a Pulaskifield militia founder ready to kick ass and an artist tying beautiful flies. You were as complicated and unique as anybody could be. You fly fished, and partied hard and you took care of me when I got sick and you’d drop a guy for talking shit. You hated school and you gave every effort to stay informed. You were tough and crazy brave and for some reason spooked by owls. Listening to Johnny Cash while you drank and grilled for hours under a hot sun is how I will remember you. You cooked and I got drunk and took your picture and ate your delicous food. Those were my favorite times, I’m lucky to have had a crazy bastard of a cousin to be there for them. You were better than the end you met and it wasn’t what you deserved. Everyone misses you and hopes you have found your peace. See you when I get there. Build the fire high so I can find you.