A Surprising Impact

Yesterday, I found out that someone I followed and interacted with on Twitter died unexpectedly in his sleep.  While I never met him in person, I enjoyed our conversations.  Craig Stanke, Deputy Managing Editor of CBSSports.com went to bed on Monday night and never woke up.

When I first saw the outpouring of grief on Twitter, it really showcased how much of an impact he made on those in the journalism industry.  It wasn’t just with CBS writers either.  I saw tweets from writers across the country who had known him and worked for or with him.

It also made me incredibly sad.  This man that I had never met, and would never have known were it not for Twitter, left the world all too soon and many of us are questioning, “why?”  It’s unfair.  Life is unfair.  He was only 56 and in the best shape of his life.  He was an avid runner and very encouraging when I told him I’d registered for the Chicago Marathon, my first full.

People that did know him and work for him are devastated (exhibits A & B).  While I didn’t, I hoped that I would, someday, because being a sports writer would be awesome.  Not that I’m talented enough, and it’s actually amazing he even started following me to begin with, but I felt lucky, and tried to make the most of our interactions.  And now countless people have been robbed of his kindness and brilliance and I can only image how is family and friends are feeling right now.   My heart goes out to them.

A tragedy such as this one really puts life in perspective for you.

A Series of Very Bad Decisions came to be because, well, I’ve made a ton of them.  If the book never gets published, I will at least know I tried, and I won’t have to wonder, “what if I never wrote it?”

I’ve wasted FAR too much time on people like JigSaw, Mr. Titspervert and Dr. Evil.  If Craig Stanke taught me anything, it is that life is too short for nonsense like that, and we should only surround ourselves with people who love us and appreciate us.

Rest in peace, Craig.  You made more of a lasting impact on literally thousands of people than you’ll ever know.

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