Thanks for Everything, Danyo…

Today I lost a dear friend, after his valiant battle against cancer. His name is Dan Rogan, and he is an amazing person. The world is a sadder place today because of his passing…

Dan battled bravely – and somewhat unconventionally – against his illness and, when it seemed as though he had defied all odds, was profiled in SCENE Magazine in Cleveland. The cover of the magazine carried this picture of Danyo…

Dan RoganIt seems fitting to me that my friend Dan would be portrayed as Superman – he was the funniest, most loving person I have ever known (and secretly, I think he LOVED capes, LOL!) He is a super man. Dan was instrumental in my own “coming of age/coming out process,” and I’m not sure that I ever thanked him for that help and support – although he would have just brushed it off anyway. He is that kind of guy, Dan Rogan – an unassuming every man, loved by all who were fortunate enough to have met him. Dan never thought he was special, but he was more than special – he was, cheesy and corny as it sounds, one of a kind.

We were besties for many, many years and then, through job and life changes, grew apart a bit. At first, I was sad by that but realized maybe Dan was needed by others, people that needed his help, love, attention and support as I had at one time, so I reluctantly let Dan “go.” We’d see each other every so often, and each time, it was just as it had always been – fun, warm, familiar and awesome. It was always as if we had just had lunch the day before, even if it had been months since we last spoke. Dan Rogan is my friend for life – and beyond.

Knowing Danyo as I do, I know he would not want us to be all sad and morose – in fact, we always joked that at our wakes, we wanted disco balls, a DJ, an open bar and a Madonna impersonator (OK, maybe I am dating our friendship a bit). Things have changed since we drafted those plans – disco is over, I don’t drink and now it is all about Lady Gaga, but I am sure the spirit of the event would be the same – love and laughter, joy, no tears…

Earlier this week, I committed to a week-long posting spree of thankfulness. When I started this post, I feared I would have to break that commitment yet now I see that I am thankful even today – thankful that I knew Dan, met a lot of his family and friends and that he was such an amazing influence in and on my life. So thank you, Universe, for not only creating Dan Rogan but also allowing me to spend some time with him. I look forward to seeing him again when the time comes. And listen, “Rodan” – you better be saving me a good seat in Heaven, right? Thanks… I will miss you. Lots of love, my dear friend…

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