"Live Long and Prosper"

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"Give a man a fish, and you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime." - Unknown 

A special quote for another special person I recently lost. I like this quote for two specific reasons. The first reason is that fishing was one of Jim's favorite pastimes. The second is because this quote reflects the knowledge and skills Jim instilled in me.

Jim owned a printing company called NCC Enterprises. In the early 90s, when I moved back to the city after trying my luck back home in the UK playing basketball, I was in need of a job. I noticed the t-shirt logo outside of Jim's business one day and decided to try my luck. 

Jim embraced me immediately and took me on as a pupil. He took the time to explain and show me step by step the entire process of printing, and using the equipment. I knew nothing about Film printing, screens and mesh counts, exposure units, and finally using the automatic equipment, or the manual press to print T-shirts.

Jim shared his knowledge and expertise with anyone who wanted to learn. He was extremely passionate about his work and it showed. 

Jim's second pastime was watching Netflix. He was a huge Star Trek fan as well. This is why he called his place of work NCC (USS Enterprise). I was never a Netflix and chill type of guy when it comes to Jim (LOL). I am more like a Netflix and Tim Horton's double double kind of brother and supply him with his morning to afternoon coffee. Jim would constantly tell me to watch Sons of Anarchy, and the Walking Dead, which I initially had no interest in watching. I eventually got hooked, and I started binge-watching with the help of my sister of course (SHM), 7 complete seasons of the Walking Dead within 3 weeks.

Last week Wednesday I finally caught up with Jim to tell him I finally completed the show. I told him the character developments and storylines were deep. He laughed and told me "I told you Bud" It was a great conversation. We also briefly chatted about Sonequa Martin-Green, Sasha from the Walking Dead, a character, and actress Jim loved, starring as the lead role in Star Trek: Discovery. 


I could have kept on discussing the show with him, but I sensed he was tired and needed to rest.

I told him we would chat another day, and promised to take his dog Harley for a walk/run.

Thursday morning I got the call from Teresa, Jim's wife, that Jim had passed away. I was completely in shock. Although, I knew he was going back to St. Michael's Hospital for his eye biopsy, I wasn't expecting this. Sometimes you don’t even realize how important someone is to you until they are gone. This has been a very difficult year for me this year. Since my birthday in December, I have lost nine people that were close to me. I was extremely fortunate to have him as my mentor, and to know just how important he was in my life before he died. 

We are all are living on borrowed time, my friends. The question is what are you going to do with the time you have?   

Every moment we wake up to breathe new a day, it is your blessing to make the best of it. The 2 things in life that are guaranteed and are our date of birth, and our date of death, the real question is that Dash in the middle, that timeline is how you're going to leave your mark, or are when you're leaving your legacy. 

George Washington Carver once said, “No individual has any right to come into the world and go out of it without leaving behind him distinct and legitimate reasons for having passed through it.”

Jim blessed so many with his life. He blessed me with the knowledge and skills to share my God-given talents with the world. All of you who have supported me and my journey throughout the years by purchasing a shirt also supported Jim. His legacy lives on through all of you. 

Ironically enough, Sonequa Martin-Green saw a mutual friend of mine wearing my Angela Davis: Baddest panther on the block t-shirt which would have been a shirt Jim would have printed. I smile and look to the sky knowing one of his favorite actors in his favorite shows has a shirt printed by Jim.

STOP putting a question MARK where God has ALREADY put a period. Live Your Life. Leave Your Legacy. 

Rest in paradise Jim 


"I have been, and always shall be, your friend.”-Leonard Nimoy 

I love you Bro

Thank u 

Mark

Author

Mark Stoddart

Comments

  • Kerry-Ann posted on August 02 2018 at 10:08 AM

    Thank you for sharing this with us, Mark. We often forget that life is meant to be lived right NOW! NOT tomorrow.

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