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Old 06-26-2011, 06:17 PM   #1
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Ten minutes to live .......


Back in 1988 my business partner, my wife and myself planned a 3 week trip across country on our gold wing motor cycles. Linda would ride with me and T.J. Would ride alone. We arranged to meet at Cripple Creek in Colorado as T.J. Got gone about three days before me and Linda.
We rambled the west, all over Colorado and over to Utah and all of Gods wonderment in that beautiful state. Arches to Bryce canyon to Zion and all the wonders we saw. In Bryce I took video of T.J. Feeding the ground squirrels. They were all over him. He had ten minutes to live... Down to Vegas and the city that never sleeps. Bright lites and the jangle of tokens in the tray of a slot machine. Life was good and more fun than the law allowed. We headed west before day light to beat the heat of the desert. We say an amazing amount of wild life along the road. We hit Bakersfield and north on I-5 to a town called Crecent City out toward the coast. We blew the winnings on a fancy pizza dinner and laughed and re lived our trip. In the pizza joint they were giving a party for a little boy about 3 years old. They sat a chocolate cake in front of him and said ''Dig In''........... He did …... He just used his little hands and he was literally covered in chocolate cake.... We laughed at the baby child and T.J. Had ten minutes to live....

Our original intent was to go up to the Coast road and see the sand dunes out on the coast in Oregon. T.J. Said he wanted to go thru Grants Pass and up to Crater Lake and that we should go up the coast and shoot pix and video and he would go by Crater lake and in a couple days we would meet at Mt. St Helen. We agreed to meet at the reception center at St Helen. If he got there first he would leave a business card and if I got there first I would leave a business card and we would get together and continue our trip.
In the parking lot it was hugs all around and ''Be Careful'' warnings all around. We pulled from the parking lot and he turned right and we turned left and he had ten minutes to live …..

My rear view mirror missed T.J. And my c.b. Radio missed his voice. We headed north and arrived at Mt. St Helen the next evening about three oclock. We checked at the reception station but thay had not seen T.J. I left a business card and we went back to I-5. We went to a restaurant for supper and I parked the bike in a conspicuous place in the parking lot. Still no T.J. I finally called home to check on my dad and they gave me the tragic news.. T.J. Was killed coming out of Crater Lake at nine thirty that morning................

T.J. Died doing what he loved. He literally loved to ride the bike and see all of Gods wondearments. He has been dead since July 1, 1988 and not a day goes by that he does not walk thru my thoughts. He was more than a friend and more than a brother.......... He was a part of me......

We all have just ten minutes to live. TEN MINUTES... think about that for a minute. What should we do with our last ten minutes to live? It's not enough time to spend all our money or tell friends and family that you love them. It's not enough time to tell people you hate, that you still hate them. It is not enough time to tell you true love how much you love them and that they should go on with their life and honor your memory after you are gone.

T.J. Pretty much lived his life like he had just ten minutes to live. His life was full and he never hesitated to enjoy life. He literally crammed everyday with things he loved and he lived his life like he had just TEN MINUTES TO LIVE.

I loved this man like a brother and he felt the same about me. He would tease me sometimes and tell me that someday I would die a rich old man and miss out on most of all the fun of life and he said one time to me …...... ''Who knows, Seajay............... Someday you aint gonna have but ten minutes to live and you aint gonna be able to cram much life in that last ten minutes''.......


God keep our troops safe and bring them home soon ….....

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Old 06-26-2011, 06:42 PM   #2
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Howdy Seajay,
Thank you for that wonderful tribute to TJ !! (my son is a TJ) You are one more kinda MAN, hoss, and I love you for it..

Smooth roads, clear skies & balmy breezes!!!!!!!!!!!

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Old 06-26-2011, 06:59 PM   #3
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Awesome memorial!! One of my grandsons is a T.J. Thank you for sharing and reminding us of those last critical ten minutes... I hope you don't mind but I shared your story on Facebook.
1982 CrossCountry - NW Indiana
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Built WITHOUT your tax dollars!!
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Old 06-26-2011, 07:15 PM   #4
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As always, Seajay... a thought-provoking thinkpiece. Thanks for reminding us about the temporal nature of this Earthly journey.
Jim and Fran in Central Florida
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Turbocharged Detroit Diesel 8.2L "Fuel Pincher"
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