Friday, September 08, 2006

Fame and passion makes death seem more final somehow.

Australia has lost two "Icons" this week.

Last Monday, the international community mourned the passing of "The Crocodile Hunter" Steve Irwin to a sting-ray barb through the heart at Batt Reef Queensland.

As irritating as I found the guy in the media, he was passionate and determined when it came to the welfare of Australia's precious flora and fauna. His enthusiasm for his work and his family were admirable despite his over the top "Crikey's!" and Energiser Bunny ways.

Today, we lost a legend in the sport of motor racing, Peter Brock.

This man has been around for most of my life (I actually thought he was younger than his 61 years though) and being somewhat of a motor racing fan (in a not-too-fussed kind of way), I have watched him race around the track at Bathhurt in New South Wales on TV many a year, with immense admiration for his ability behind the wheel.

Also a passionate man in his work for Driver Education and for living life rather than just working in it... it is almost poetic in a sense that he died in a Targa Car Rally in Western Australia today.

Both men died doing what they loved. Both men epitomised passion and integrity in their respective crafts. Both men were energetic and highly respected for their skills and their humanity. Both men were ALIVE with spirit and joi de vivre, their enthusiasm and purpose were contagious and they were idolised by many for their generosity.

Who knows why God chooses to take the famous in "crops" like this! It reminds me of the time when Princess Diana's death was very closely followed by the death of Mother Theresa. Two global icons "walking" together into the realm beyond life, as we know it here in this temporal sphere.

We all of us die. As the song by Ugly Kid Joe says "10 out of 10 die"

Nothing is surer than our death. What we do between our birth and our death is either stuff to write about in newspapers or its not. But that doesn't mean that each and every death is not without poignancy or pain. The death of an unknown child in Africa is as equally sad as the death of any Aussie Icon.

Its just that Icons and the Famous remind us of just how fragile and extraordinary that space is between our birth and our death. Bless the families of these two men that they may know peace and hope in spite of their loss.

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