I didnt' know Jordan Curtis but I know 22 years on this earth wasn't long enough.
His dad, Todd, used to work here at KATV. Judging by the standing room only, packed house funeral...it was obvious that Jordan touched many people in his 22 years.
A co-worker of mine and I wanted to do a story on Jordan about a year ago when had kicked cancer's butt. He wasn't expected to, but he did. He was going to school at the U of A and we never worked out a time to meet. Boy, do I wish we had. The cancer came back. And this time, it won.
I cried a lot throughout the funeral. There were several of us Channel 7-ers gathered in an overflow room together. The song "Angels Among Us" made us all tear up. So did hearing his fraternity brothers share about their brother they loved. But nothing hit harder than hearing his own mom share words that her only son had written. One was from when he was in junior high. The other, his essay to get into med school. Saying how he thought he'd make a great oncologist because he had once been a patient.
The family, and all his friends, had such hope that he would pull through. He was a proven fighter. And we all believed he would make it. It reminds me of when our own Anne Pressly was fighting for her life in the hospital. We were given reason to believe that she'd get better. She was a fighter. Surgery was scheduled for the following Monday. Which is why we were all so shocked when we heard the news. It seemed even harder to believe. But would we have been less devastated if we hadn't had hope that she'd be okay? Would it really have lightened the blow if we were more "prepared" for that kind of news? I don't believe so. Because the truth is, no one can ever be prepared for that kind of news. So for me, I would rather live life with constant hope... than in a dark mode of preparation for the worst. It is a choice. Not an easy one, but a choice nonetheless.
Jordan died on Father's Day. The pastor at the funeral today said Jordan's dad called it the best Father's Day gift he could have been given...because his son was no longer in pain. Now that is faith. Faith with hope.