Thursday, June 16, 2011 way.

A man I loved left the world late Tuesday night.  I met him when I was in sixth grade.  I was standing on the newly poured concrete basement foundation of my dad's house in Hustonville, Kentucky. I stood facing south (I think) watching this red headed girl about my age with her parents standing on the foundation of their house, also on Hancock Street.  My stepmother at the time was a teacher at the school in Hustonville and knew this family well.  We walked down the then gravel road and met the Luttrell family.  Both around 12 years old at the time, Sarah and I stared more at our feet than talking to each other.  We both had those bad mid-90s, for lack of a better term, "turd-roll" bangs.  It was on that day I met Steve, Sarah's dad, and her mom Cynthia.  Little did I know on that day in sixth grade that Sarah and I would become best friends, not just in junior and high school, but now as adults. 

Steve ended his long battle with multiple myeloma on Tuesday night at the young age of fifty-seven.  Ever by his side, Sarah and Cynthia sat.  As devastated and heart broken as I was to hear the news, I could not fathom the million pieces my best friend's heart was breaking into.  She, like her father, are always strong, driven and focused.  Losing him is losing her second self....and yet her best friend. 

Sarah is an only child and a girl.  Her gender did not matter to Steve.  He bestowed upon her his love of cars... I never remember the Luttrells having less than three cars at their house at any given time.  Steve's mustang, Steve's Jimmy, Sarah's Pontiac after we were 16, and then Cynthia's car, which varied between a hunter green Mercury Sable, a white mini van, and a gray Jeep Cherokee.  It was in that Jeep Cherokee that we drove to many cheerleading of course watching because THAT was not my thing...Steve and I would sit and complain but cheer Sarah on, nonetheless.  He also imparted his love for golf to Sarah.  Remember I said they are both stubborn....(strong-willed :-)  Well, I only golfed to get out of basketball conditioning and so that Sarah and I could hang out more.  I remember being privy to several trips to Hickory Hills golf course in Liberty, KY with Steve and Sarah.... by the end, they would be so frustrated with each other, one was throwing their hands in the air.  Yet, every golf match we ever played Steve meandered hole to hole, not only watching Sarah but me and our friend Gentry as well.....offering encouragement and pointers when our own parents could not be there.

The world took back a special man this week, though one that needed not to suffer any longer.  We will all laugh a little less because of Steve's absence but enjoy who he is by living life with his wife and enjoying his collection of antique barber chairs and the Mustang and his manicured yard and his stories of hitchhiking while in his 20s, remembering dinner at their house with my new husband or the time JT showed up to visit without me... and Cynthia was in her robe and Steve laughing so hard at this, or explaining our whereabouts in high school multiple times...always being caught.  I will remember Steve and Cynthia (and Sarah) driving to Bowling Green, KY and sitting in 100 degree heat to watch me graduate from college.  Who does that????

I pray for their hearts' grief yet I always pray they see the deep impact that permeated wherever Steve went...the effect he had on many beyond him.  I pray that the Lord comforts Cynthia after losing a husband of many years and Sarah for the loss of her daddy during the week of Father's Day.  But I hope they know this.....Steve lived well and Steve lived on purpose.  That can not be taken back.  That is not stolen by the grave.  I loved this man and considered him family .  I write both the funny and sad of this post with a huge "I'm on call and crying would be awkward" lump in my throat.  Please pray for the Luttrells as they endure the funeral proceedings....and then try to live life.  I love these people so please love on them in your prayers. 

"I still remember the day the world took you back & there was never time to thank you for the thousand scattered moments you left behind to watch us while we slept"

Steven Randall Luttrell

1 comment:

  1. Just catching up on your blog, but he sure did sound like such a great man!