Sunday, August 24, 2008

Mac, you will be terribly missed

One of the hardest things I have ever had to do for a friend I did today. I knelt before my friend Maggie and told her that God loved her. As I looked into her distraught, tear-stained face I wondered how I was going to explain that to my friend who had just lost her son. Her son Mac had drown the day before when a flash flood pulled him into a flooded and over-flowing lake from the supposed safety of "looking for crayfish." I am not sure if she will ever find comfort in those words or if she will even remember I said them to her.

On the other hand, I will forever remember her reply: "I don't feel it. I'm mad at Him." I told her that was okay. He was a big God and he could handle it. "Go ahead, be mad," I told her. "He will love you through it. Just like I will and the rest of us will love you through this." It was quite possibly the most difficult thing I have ever had to do: to tell a woman, a friend that everything would be okay, while the entire time MY SON is standing right next to me and hers is gone forever.

I looked around the room later and saw nearly all of Mac's teammates - Colin included - who had come to be with Mac's family; who were a part of Mac's swimming family. I found comfort in their being there. I hope that Maggie, Charlie, and Savannah did as well. Later they will, I know. But, now, at this moment, the pain must be incomprehensible.

Mac (in the white tee shirt) and teammates Scott, Alex and Sergey.
Mac and teammate Joey - behind the blocks.

Mac was fun, funny, witty, full of life and a great swimmer. He was "an up and coming star" of the ATAC team. Which makes his drowning all that more ironic. How can that happen to a Junior Olympic Team swimmer? God alone knows. But, it should remind us that nature has a way of grounding us and keeping our feet firmly planted on the ground. Unfortunately, that doesn't lessen the sadness or the pain, or the emptiness that Mac's family and teammates will feel for quite some time to come.

Mac doing one of the things he did best: swim like a fish - and race for the wall!

Your family and your friends and ATAC miss you! We love you.

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Mac's "SwimSTRONG" Foundation

Mac's "SwimSTRONG" Foundation
Love this art work. Click for link to the web site. And follow Team TRI Mac at