Brotherly Love


 My brother, John, rocking an O’Doul’s at the Wolf Lake High gathering, June 2013.

I can’t believe I’m doing this again. Writing about another brother gone. It’s almost a week since my big brother, John, passed away, but I’m dating this post the day he died of cardiac arrest after surgery.

Brotherly love

“Sal (14) & John (25) Oct-Nov 1975.”

My protector. I didn’t know until a couple of years ago that when Hydra and I first got together, John wrote Hydra a letter explaining that I was someone’s beloved little sister who should be treated with respect.

We were so close for a long time. When he came back from Vietnam I was ten or eleven. He took me to movies and picked me up after basketball games, and talked to me a lot on the drives. He never told me anything scary. I don’t really remember what we talked about, but it was good for both of us.

John helped me develop my taste in movies. He took me to some great films he thought I should see, and to just fun stuff too. Before he went back to Indiana this fall, we saw Live. Die, Repeat  (formerly known as The Edge of Tomorrow) together. Probably the last movie he saw in a theater. We loved it.


Can you hear that laugh?  I can! At the Wolf Lake High School gathering in 2013. So good to connect with old friends.

He loved nature. He had an artistic eye, which showed in his photography, artwork, and his home in Texas. He was difficult sometimes, but aren’t we all?


On our way to karaoke in Pierceton, IN, June 2013.  That was a very good visit. John recited part of The Cremation of Sam McGee.

We talked on the phone at least every week for the past couple of years, if not every day or two. The phone rings around that time of night, and you know what Hydra and I are thinking.

Family 1987This is who we were in 1987, right before Hydra and I got married. Brian, Joan, Sally, John, Peg and Herb under the maple tree in the front yard.


10 thoughts on “Brotherly Love

  1. Tender and touching memories of your brother, Sally. I can’t claim to understand what all happens when we leave this life, but I sure like to picture your brother laughing his great laugh (wish I had met him so that I could have heard it!) up there in the firmament. Nothing lasts forever except love, and your brother loves you still and will always be your protector.

  2. Sundry says:

    Thanks, Treacy. I don’t know either. I’d like to think that John and Brian are teaching my Dad the board game we all learned to love, Acquire.

  3. J Jones says:

    So sorry to hear about your brother. This is a wonderful piece and I think he’d love to see what you had to say. It is obvious that you were close.

  4. kitty says:

    Thank you for this Sally. Beautifully done. It comforts me to believe the boys are together somewhere

  5. seabluelee says:

    What a wonderful tribute to your brother and your relationship with him. I’m so sorry to hear of his passing – much too soon, it seems.

  6. Fran says:

    Hello Sally. Your dear mother sent me the lovely tribute to your brother.
    You are indeed a true “wordsmith”.
    He and I were in Rehab sessions at Miller’s in Sept.I’m glad I met him.
    I do not pretend to know the answers about the hereafter; I just know it will be all right, whatever…

    • Sundry says:

      Fran, I know that seeing another friendly face in rehab was good for John! Thanks for being such a good friend to my mother, and by extension to all of her family. Hope you are doing well.

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