Thursday, June 21, 2007

A loss of a great friend...

I've been prepping a few posts, ready to talk about my taper and what is going here for me in Coeur d'Alene, as I prepare to race against the toughest men's field assembled in this part of the world, outside of Kona. But all that changed today, when I learned of the death of my friend, Jim McCann. Jim passed away yesterday in his home, at age 46, from an apparent heart attack or stroke. His passing was very sudden, and unexpected.

I wish this post was about talking with friends, swimming, biking, running, and hanging out. Instead, I'm reflecting on a friendship which I will miss, and feel guilty about taking for granted.

About a couple months ago, Jim and I had talked, and spent an afternoon together filming some short clips on transitions for his business. After we got done, he and I sat and talked for a few hours. We discussed a lot of things, and he gave me a lot of great advice as I try to run my own business and make a living from triathlon. He never asked for anything, or had a hidden agenda, he just loved people, and wanted to see them succeed.

I'll be, when I heard the news, I called my wife. I started crying on the phone with her. It was tough. Jim was recently married to his wonderful wife, Dee Dee, and I couldn't help but feel for her, as a newly wed myself.

Jim, I wish you well in your new place above us. I will miss you, and all that you've done for me, the triathlon community, and all the great things I never even knew about. If I could talk with you right now, I would tell you your life and passing has made me stronger, more focused, and a more grounded person. Thanks man....thanks a lot.

I won't say this won't affect my race, but I refuse say it's a negative. This shows me what a truly special opportunity I have this weekend. I have the chance to win this race, I know I do. I can not give anything less than my best out there, I will not allow myself that. Life is not long enough, and these opportunities too rare. Jim's life has shown me that.

Farewell, my friend...


PS -Triathlete Magazine has written a great obituary on Jim,


Michelle Panik said...

Thanks for posting this. Good luck tomorrow.

Dave P said...

Great post Jim.
Have a great race tomorrow!!