Yesterday we lost a friend, a humorist, a bright and shining star. My daughter McKenzie called in the morning to let me know that my friend Chris Young had died the night before. Its always so hard to get this news but it was nice to have it come from someone who understands what Chris meant to me. His humor, his candor, his mischievous and delightful approach to life, his ability to make you feel like a friend in a few minutes were all things I had shared with my daughters and many clients as his stories were so full of depth and laughter.
I had a photo shoot with a lovely couple minutes after getting the news of Chris' passing. Their two daughters had me smiling in no time as they are rare gems themselves. A few hours later I arrived with my assistant Letty to photograph the wedding of my young friend Ashley. My daughters went to the same grade school as Ashley and the memory of her battle with AVM which resulted in a brain hemorrhage when she was at St Benedict School made her wedding one of triumph and hope. I told Ashley about the loss of Chris as I arrived as I knew she would be so understanding if I needed a moment sometime during her big day. I knew Ashley's wedding would be special and that the love between her and her lucky groom, Stephen would be magic and full of grace and laughter. But I never would have dreamed that as she toasted with her mom and bridesmaids before going to see the groom for the first time that she would include Chris in her toast. She was the perfect bride, a rare individual who embraces life and doesn't flinch. Thank you Ashley and Stephen for choosing me to record your truly beautiful wedding. The toasting photo above captured one of the moments of grace yesterday but not the little catch of my breath as Ashley mentioned my friend.
Of course in the true spirit of Soulumination there was a surprise for Soul on my desk as I arrived home from the wedding, Megan our new administrator had used her key to the office for the first time to leave us a gift before her flight to Hawaii. Megan starts work on September 1 and has left a great job to join us. She is taking a pay cut and losing some benefits but she views the work of Soul as a rare opportunity. She left a check for $500 from Ocean Peace, her former employers. This gift was organized by Michael Faris and Connie Steitz, and I couldn't be more touched.
In a few hours I will attend Chris' memorial, the service he planned himself. I salute you Chris and I thank his parents and his two lovely sisters for sharing Chris with me and my camera. He was a prince among men, someone I loved.
In love and peace, Lynette