Friday, August 26, 2011

Filanthropy Friday

On Saturday a childhood friend of mine, Nick Kaschik, died unexpectedly.

I hadn't seen him since we were 16, maybe 17-years-old, but he was part of my swimming days (and there were many of them) so I have lots of good memories.

Nick's family is still uncertain about the cause of his death, but right now they're saying it was a heart attack.  He was my age (only two weeks older than me) and in seemingly good health.

Nick had a fascinating life.  He was a phenomenal swimmer (swam for USC) and a practical joker, but one event really stands out for me - it's when he got very sick when we were 13-years-old.  It was a very rare form of meningitis and he was in a coma for weeks.  When he woke up, he couldn't remember anything - he had virtually no memory.  There were many news articles (here and here) that say it a medical miracle that he even survived. The fact that he was able to walk again and then to swim at such a high level surpassed all expectations.

I'll just remember his big smile, infectious laugh and how I used to tease my friend Nana (the one with the twins I visit frequently in Houston) about her crush on him (they "went together" in junior high).
This week I donated $25 to his memorial fund.  Rest in peace old friend.


  1. So sorry to hear about this loss to the world and to his family.

  2. Way to go. You made me cry first thing in the morning. I hope you are real proud of yourself.

    In all seriousness though, I read the articles about Nick and matched your donation to his memorial fund. I really did cry when I read about his childhood illness...having memories stolen is the cruelest of all things. He sounded amazing and I am so sad for his family and friends. The world lost a really good person.

    I made the donation in your honor because if Nick was important to you and your childhood then, for that reason alone, I want to honor him. I mean you didn't rob convenience stores or sell crack as a child so your peers must have been positive influences who helped you see that, no matter how enticing, a life of crime was not the best future for you. I hope they envisioned Matt Naylor, baby Cash, your awesome friend Liz, and Flooring Warehouse for your future instead.