My friend Jeff Zabel died this year.
He died from a heart atttack, and happened to be flying his plane at the time. Lots of peole just assume he made an error in his flying. But rest assured he did not. ( autopsy proved what people close to him knew all along).
Jeff was my friend my entire life. We were real close from about 15-20. He was a grade above me, and after our high school years life took us in different directions and locations.
Jeff married and had kids young in his life, and I did not. We lived hundreds of miles apart for many years and even after I returned back to our hometown and were only 30 miles apart we didn't get to spend much time together.
I popped into his office once in a blue moon and he'd pop in once in a while too and from the airport hanger from flying. I would go with him once in a while flying. Jeff was a dilligent, carefull and skilled pilot.
Jeff was a very intelligent man. He was devoted to his wife and children. When we could get a chance to visit, his family and passion for flying always was a common topic. He truly had passion for his family and his hobby. The thing that always amazed me about our friendship was that no matter how long it had been since our last visit , or how many miles seperated us, Jeff was the same Jeff that I spent countless hours with as a high schooler....we laughed at the same things, could almost finish each others sentances. A simple glance from us could break us out in laughter because we knew dang well what the other one was thinking.
We lost a hard working, intelligent, genuine, loyal, good honest man when he passed. I will hold him in my heart til the day I die.