My Dear Brothers,
It was just over one year ago that Paul received the news that he had Stage 4 Cholangiocarcinoma cancer - a virtual death sentence. Paul, Melanie and their two young sons endured a nightmarish year of treatments, emergency room visits, hospitalizations, emergency blood transfusions and all of the inherent stresses, false hopes and despair that accompanied each event throughout the year.
However it was also a year of extraordinary kindness and an affirmation of love, family and friendship. So many people went above and beyond even our wildest expectations to try and help this family through all of the hardships. None better than the members of the BRS, the Signal Department and the rest of the LIRR management.
My daughter, Melanie, grew up watching the camaraderie of the Brotherhood and longed to find something similar in her life. She was doubly blessed to both fall in love with Paul and to be brought back into the fold so to speak. Paul was well loved and the outpouring of support that all of you contributed to him and his family was truly remarkable.
We will never forget it and we will tell these stories to his young sons so that they can be proud of both the impact that their father had with his fellow brothers and of the incredible generosity that his brothers bestowed upon his family.
I have attended too many wakes of my fellow Brothers through these last almost 40 years so I was prepared to see a large showing but even I was taken aback by the the sheer number of guys that came to pay their respects. It was a fitting send off for Tall Paul and a wonderful visual representation for his parents of what the BRS is all about. We were all deeply moved.
Words cannot convey the depths of our gratitude but please know that by your actions you managed to bring solace and sunshine to Paul, Melanie, Alex and Myles in their darkest hours of need.