Those of you who follow Terry Heaton’s Pomo Blog already know that Terry’s wife, Allie, died this week. Her death at 41 was sudden, unexpected, and of course heartbreaking beyond words to Terry, her husband of only 18 months.
Terry’s post about his beloved wife is touching and sincere, as one might expect. But what is perhaps more touching and revealing than the post itself are all the comments from friends, online acquaintances and perfect strangers – more than 152 at last count and growing by the minute.
Many of these mourners knew Terry only through his writing. They didn’t know Terry personally, they didn’t know his wife, and they didn’t know Terry’s favorite food or football team. Yet the pain in these people’s comments seeps through the computer screen as if Terry was a blood relative. There are condolences, poems, prayers and personal reflections. There are people stripped of all pretense and puffery, commenting not out of the need to get links, but the need to share love.
Say what you want about bloggers and social media. Question blogging’s veracity and its place in the world of modern communications. But never question the power of one man with a computer and something to say to move a multitude of strangers.
Through his loss, Terry Heaton has given us all the opportunity to connect in a deeply personal way to him, Allie, and each other. And for that, Terry, we thank you from the bottom of our blogging hearts.
Zichronah livrachah — may Allie’s memory be a blessing to us all.