Today, as I was scrolling through my Facebook feed, an article about our local hospital came up, sponsored by the hospital system and highlighting a volunteer-led effort to care for a shared garden between the hospital and the bordering college. The accompanying photo looked very familiar, and when I clicked on it, the link took me to the News and Happenings page of the hospital website, where this photo graced the top of the page. And I recognized a lot of the faces, including my own, from a photo taken a few years ago when March of Dimes presented the hospital with a Patient Safety Award banner.
First of all, it’s pretty odd to see yourself on a website like that. But that’s cool. And it made me remember that a few years after my father passed away in 2000, for some reason I visited the website for the nursing home he had been in here in Maryland, and there on the front static page was my father. And he looked happy. And that made me happy, if only to know that on that particular day in that particular place (which was fine, but still a nursing home, so not great by any means), he was happy.
This led my brain to remember that my brother, Marc, had been in the staff photo on his company’s website. I remember thinking how wonderful it was to visit that website after he died and know that he was still there on that page, still present somewhere where people visited, still part of that community. And I checked today, more than two years after he died, and he was still there! As were the young interns who helped us clean out his apartment and take his many books to create a resource library for Mentis Sciences and the many youth with whom they work. This was a place where Marc was accepted, faults and all, brilliance and all, oddities and all, and he still exists there in some way.
We’ll be remembered for all of our online personalities – the kind, the odd, the weird, the funny, the ugly, the eccentric, the idiotic (I’m looking at you, Mr. President) – those we perpetuate on our own and those that show up through other people’s channels. Right now, today, I love that I was able to visit a website and find my brother still very much a part of the company and the people who gave him so much.