Last week, I said goodbye to a dear friend, Gregg Gallagher. He was a sweet man with a quick wit and an easy smile. He put the "social" in my "social media." He was the first person I met on twitter, and one of the first people I met in person from "the Cloud." (Not everyone is an ax murderer or an imaginary unicorn!) I attended a few meet-ups that he attended as well. Gregg was a connector. He enjoyed his friends, and he enjoyed creating circles of friends around him. He hosted potlucks, and Rock Band sessions...epic Rock Band sessions. We laughed, and ate and drank...and it was good. Because of him, I have a wonderful circle of friends. That's who Gregg was.
Before Christmas, he was diagnosed with cancer. He fought, and it looked like he was winning. But it continued to progress, quickly. A few months ago, we got together for a Rock Band party that none of us knew was going to be our last. Soon after, he was in the hospital. We visited him. He never went home again. He was transferred to a rehab facility, and though JNerd and I were able to visit him a few times there, he finally went to hospice in his son's home. I had hoped to visit him there, but he died soon afterwards. I regret that I didn't get to spend time with him there...it all happened so fast!
He was a champion of social media, and few know that he was instrumental in bringing the internet to AT&T in the beginning. World Net was his baby, along with his team. His team won an award that sits in the Smithsonian because of it. He was the one who turned me on to the iPad. I was the one who talked him into getting his greyhound, Ares. "You need a dog, Gregg," I said.
Gregg's hobby was photography. I loved the way he saw the world. He helped me with my camera, and got me excited about taking pictures. Just after he died, I saw this picture again. The finality in it made me ache.
photo by Gregg Gallagher
The copy from the above photo is: "You may have gone back to school, but you'll be missing me come Spring Break."
You don't know how right you were, Gregg.
Last Saturday dawned warm and sunny. The perfect California day. We boarded a boat with some of Gregg's closest friends, who, because of Gregg, became our friends as well, and we laid him to rest. Afterwards, we had a luncheon at the Bluewater Grill, complete with a Guinness and some calamari for Gregg.
No one touched his Guinness.
To you, my friend. May you be at peace.