I miss you. I love you. My heart is broken for you. I'm at a loss for words, but I find comfort in seeing the photos and stories that others have been sharing. Comfort in knowing how many lives and hearts you've touched and brought joy to. Your goofiness and positivity were undeniably infectious.
I want to share some of my own stories and anecdotes as well. Hopefully these little stories will bring a smile to someone's face and remind them of the happiness that you brought us all.
Maddy and I were in the same group for our Mechanical Design 2 class at Cal Poly. The final project was designing a fixture that could support solar panels and follow the sun under certain conditions. On day one of the project we were required to submit several basic prototype designs, just to explore our different options. In addition to the "normal" designs we submitted, we also submitted a rather silly idea: Paul, the intern. We would pay him an hourly rate just to hold the solar panel and point it towards the sun. It certainly gave us and the professor a good chuckle at the time. Around a year later, I was downright giddy to find a flyer for a solar installation company featuring a photo of someone holding a solar panel nearly exactly as how we sketched Paul. I sent it to Maddy and I got a good laugh out of it all over again. Finally, our excellent prototype idea was validated. (Also, Maddy was an absolute rockstar on this project. He did a majority of the SolidWorks assembly and made a beautiful animation showing our design's functionality.)
Admittedly, I was a bit of a candid-snapchat-taking menace back in the day. On more than one occasion I'd have him posing for a picture or I would whip around a corner with my phone up, only for him to take a few seconds to realize that I was actually recording a video. It usually ended with him hurling a string of expletives towards me with his signature big, goofy grin on his face. In a way it almost became our way of saying "hi, good morning" in the minutes before class began.
Maddy was the reason I took a spontaneous trip to New York City in December of 2017. He was stopping there with his family as he was on his way to his Birthright in Israel, and had a spare bed in his hotel room for a night. He called me up and within an hour I was on the North Jersey Coast Line to spend the day with him. I'm from New Jersey and was home for the holidays, and I'm so glad he thought of me because that night was such a blast. A bit of wandering, a few bars, and a few extended conversations with strangers. Including one man whose drink of choice was Johnny Walker Black neat, a drink Maddy and I got once he left to "honor" our new pal, or something. He was a bartender at Madison Square Garden and had quite a few tales to tell us. Also another snapchat that was definitely a video despite me loudly telling Maddy "NO IT'S NOT JUST POSE FOR A PICTURE." We made our way back to the hotel, but only after I INSISTED that we stop at a Halal food cart. I really regret that I forgot to warn Maddy how spicy the red sauce was... He went all in and DEFINITELY regretted it the next day. Sorry about that one, dude.
That's all I've got for now. I may come back and add to this post later on if more of these memories come to mind.
I miss you, Maddy. I love you, Maddy. Thank you for everything you've added to my life.