“My name is Josh Crews-do you know who I am?!”
A man that exuded old style southern gentleman charm and hospitality, but suffered a tragic character flaw in his own novel of living life at the edge.
Josh and I first met because of the alphabet and homeroom. Our last names would bind us together through four years of middle school, but it was the English classes that made me aware of his special powers. Josh could perform almost any act with a book in hand all the while wearing shorts, even if it was snowing. Growing up I found myself at odds with Josh more often than not, as we had vastly different opinions, but it was in our debate that Josh and I learned to respect each other and purposely disagree into the wee hours of the night.
Which brings me to life in the latter years with Mr. Crews…What a ride! As I started to compile a list of moments that we shared, I realized that there are a few standouts…my favorite one was a late afternoon day while driving back from a flower delivery. I was gazing at the ocean when I spotted Josh laying in the sand…no towel, just laying and sweating in the sand with the tide on the rise…It was funny to see, but the peculiar part was that his book was quite a distance away. I couldn’t help myself and marched down to investigate. Of course, I invariably ended up sitting in the sand too as I questioned Josh about his tossed aside book. “That book is Garbage!” he stated, “If the author feels the need to use too many words to describe an action then I just don’t have time to read the trash. If a man see’s a tree, I don’t need two pages of descriptions to explain what the tree looks like!”
I’ll never forget that moment. I do believe that Josh was the person who inspired my love affair with words and it was his vocabulary that I admired most, but when I get wordy, I remember Josh covered in sand throwing out that book.
There are many more facets to Josh and millions of memories he shared with family and friends, but I believe it was said best by his great friend Joe Rizzo… “Josh always complained about this one author that died before he finished a series of books and how disappointed he was. Unfortunately, the best story is going untold. Josh lived life to the fullest and had no regrets. I guess we all wanted to read the next chapter because it was such a good book.”
The end of Josh’s life is a tragedy and what’s worse is that his story was never finished…but he will remain forever in our minds as a handsome man with a big pearly smile, relaxing on a porch in his Tommy Bahama uniform, cooling off with a whiskey and a camel, listening to Buffet, reading the next best fiction, and dreaming about dancing with a beautiful, soft, curvy girl. We will always love you Josh!! Cheers buddy and have a round of red headed sluts waiting for us!
and to Scott, Melanie, Matt, Adam and the rest of your beautiful family…we are all thinking of you…
a facebook page has been established: In Memory of Josh Crews
please leave a story of how Josh embellished your life…
**Update** A writing project has been started in Josh’s honor. To date it has raised over 50,000 dollars and helped publish two anthologies of writing from our local elementary school talent. It is now a creative writing club in five schools and growing. Here is a link to the most recent updates and published works… The Josh Crews Writing Project