My Dad died just over a year ago after a two year battle with bladder cancer. I say battle, but he was really in good health (other than the cancer) and good spirits right up to the last few weeks. He was 86 and led an amazingly full, blessed life.

When a parent dies sometimes it brings our own mortality a little closer in a way. We’re the next in line. You know the train of thought. But today is one of those days that makes the frailty of life all to clear. A 33 year old man, a construction worker, had a massive stroke today and was airlifted out to Denver. He’s married and has children and is the bread winner. We’re all praying that he survives and comes through OK.

But there are always these times. I’m sure I’m not just the odd duck that knows all the wrong people. My first wife died at age 33 of cancer. That stuff isn’t supposed to happen.

My present (and forever) wife’s first husband died in his 40’s from leukemia. He died when my now step daughters were in their early teens.

A doctor friend of ours was in his late 30’s when he went to a conference out in California. When his wife couldn’t get in touch with him they found him dead in his motel room from a heart attack.

My brother in law’s first wife died in her 50’s from cancer. There have been a lot of deaths in my church family of the past 13 years. Some, like my Dad, lived a good long life, but too many were young. Too many died way too soon.

How close it’s been through my adult life. I bought life insurance long before I ever considered being in the business. Too many people I knew were left with huge holes in their lives and I didn’t want my wife or children to have financial problems added to an inexplicable loss.

Bottom line. How close does it need to come before you get it?