Great Dad, wonderful brother,
Great friend, mom’s first love
Brian was a good looking, charming, sweet and loving man. He loved the outdoors, often camping in the woods, with just a tent and backpack, sometimes with his daughter. He was a very affectionate dad and took the time to teach her things. His mom was very proud of the father he became. He was also a loving big brother to Jason; they were extremely close. Jason now “has a hole in his heart without his brother in his life.”
Brian’s and his mom did everything together, trips to the zoo, playing baseball or going to the Laundromat. Doing laundry was made much more fun by eating at the Chinese restaurant next door as the clothes washed.
As a boy, he liked sports and was an amazing baseball player. He liked to work with his hands, and made a living as a carpenter. He also had an interest in becoming a drug counselor, wanting to work in a rehab facility.
Brian had a lot of long term friends, many of them going back to Junior High, and though they lived in various parts of the country, they stayed close. All of them came to Brian’s funeral. One friend shared with his mother that Brian had been instrumental in helping her to come out to her family and friends, it meant a lot to her to have such support. She ended up being the “best man” at his wedding.
Every year in August, around Brian’s birthday, the family had a backyard Barbeque with bushels of crabs. The last one was held two months before he died. His mother reflects fondly on this event, saying it was a “mother’s dream” and a “highlight of her life, having everyone together.”
His mother misses his deep, comforting hugs and his laugh. She often wants to call him and share something funny that no one else would get, but can’t. Not only did she, “lose her first love to the disease of addiction, but also her granddaughter as her mother will not allow contact since Brian’s death.”
His mother says Brian’s death has “changed everything about me.” She is now very involved in the addiction community and politically active with elected officials trying to direct money toward addiction awareness and programming. Her circle of friends has dwindled mostly to those who have lost their children to addiction; “I can relate to them and be comfortable, and if someone spontaneously cries, they don’t get upset, they get it.”
Brian’s mother, Vicki Bishop, was interviewed for this profile.
August 19, 1972 – Oct 31, 2017
Lived with Addiction his entire life