Words. Bill Harris

January 10th, 2011 by Conor

I was fortunate enough to meet Danny when I was taking a Wilderness Medicine course up in Conway NH in 2009. Conor was a student in the class and he was kind enough to share his knowledge of the area. He took us on a few great hikes, and invited a couple of us back to his house.

We walked in and met Danny, he was sitting in the kitchen doing some kind of work with decals. I remember being blown away that two young, single guys lived in such a clean and well kept house. I thought for sure that there had to be a woman somewhere keeping the place so spotless. When I mentioned it to Conor his response was ” my mom is kind enough to let us live here the least we can do is take care of it”. I knew instantly these were not typical irresponsible young knuckleheads.

From two rooms away Danny overheard Conor apologizing to us that there really wasn’t anyplace to party on a Tuesday night and said ” if you guys want to party, I can make a few phone- calls”

A few phone-calls and 30 minutes later there were 20 people circled around the kitchen counter playing some beer dice game and we had a blast.

I also remember Danny laughing his ass off at Conor and me when we dumped our canoe in the 40-degree Saco River, five minutes into a two-hour paddle. Conor and I spent the rest of the trip hoping Danny would dump his canoe every time he hit rough water, he never did. Months later I Googled him and found out what an absolute stud he is on the mountain.

The few hikes, the few beers, the wet canoeing trip, and the time hanging out up on cathedral are lasting and cherished memories of my brief stint in NH. I am thankful to The Toumarkine brothers for graciously welcoming me into their circle of friends and sharing the beauty of their hometown with me. I am looking forward to bringing my sons there and sharing it with them.

I know how cliché it is to say that “Everything happens for a reason” but I believe it’s all part of the grand design. My family’s thoughts and prayers will be with you guys and your family. Conor I hope my sons are as good at being a brother as you are, your Mom should be commended for raising two great sons. When this is all in the rearview mirror, I will do whatever if takes to ensure our paths cross again and I will gladly buy the first round. Until then, stay strong and God bless.

Bill Harris
US Navy

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