2016 was a memorable year for all of the important things that happened in the world. Elections, championships, loss. This year the Module family lost three friends.
Jordan Yee was only a young man who had his future before him. We only got to spend a short time with him but all who were lucky to have him in a group or call him friend were blessed to know him. As tragic as his loss is, there is comfort in knowing how many people he touched in a short time. He attended his only Module weekend retreat in 2011, the last one I rectored and my favorite one. He was open to everything that happened and had so much life. I remembering wishing we had a dozen of him so that every person on the weekend could share a part of him. His loss was tragic and senseless and I miss him.
Carla Legendre was an Alumni of St. Andrews and Mary Louis and the older sister of Yasmine. She joined the Module in the early 1990’s and quickly became one of the most popular teens of her era. She was an old friend of mine and we hadn’t spoken in a while when I learned of her loss. My favorite memory of her was when she would call to talk to me on Thursday nights at 8pm, at the exact same time as my favorite show was on. She knew calling me would cause me to miss it but she didn’t care. I would be yelling at her to let me call her back and she would refuse to get off of the phone. Meeting her sister years later as a teen and becoming friends with her helped me get in touch with Carla again. Her loss in March was sudden and sad and so many people still feel her loss.
Michelle Bischoff’s passing in March affected me more than I realized. I didn’t remember how many important moments in my life Michelle was a part of until I sat down to process her loss. She was a Team member from my first day as a teen in 1985. She was the home I went to for Module extra event meetings such as the St. Mary’s Hospital event in 1988. She and Phil along with Mary Bailey and John Fodera came to my house for my high school graduation party in 1989. I went to St. Andrew’s to attend her and Phil’s wedding. She was the first small group partner I worked with on my first day as a Team member in 1994. When Amy Toskas and I ran the Opening Day in September 1998 that over 95 teens attended and we were desperate to get help to come and work a group, she was the first person to say yes. And when I was working on my book on the history of the Module (still coming!), she and Phil invited Lise and I to their home in North Carolina for an evening of wonderful memories and great brownies. She was the warmest, most genuine person I have been blessed to call a friend and I miss her very much.
As we begin a new year, let us never forget the important people in our lives and always be open to them. And pick up the phone and call someone you haven’t spoken to in a while. They will be glad you did.