2016 can’t end soon enough

Published 10:45 am Thursday, December 29, 2016

I don’t know about you, but I literally cannot wait until midnight Saturday when we say good-bye to 2016. It seems as though as I say so long to another year, I have also slowly watched my youth fade away as icons I grew up with passed away.

And as a result, I’m beginning to take more notice of my own mortality.

I’m just over 50 years of age and apparently I’m categorized as a “Generation X” person, according to an Associated Press story I ready yesterday.

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I grew up with pop culture in the 70s when Florence Henderson was that stay-at-home Mom who could sing and dance and put on a backyard play.

My first real music was the Eagles and lead singer Glenn Frey and his ability to mold country and rock music into awesomeness.

I also listened to a little David Bowie, but when this dude in purple outfits showed up in the 80s on MTV and was wailing on a guitar like Hendrix, I returned to listening to rock music.

Henderson, Frey, Bowie and Prince all passed away in 2016, and with it, a great deal of my youth. That sadness of grief became amplified this week when George Michael, an iconic singer from my teen years, died over the Christmas weekend. I was shocked to find out he was closer to my age than I had realized. And then actress Carrie Fisher passed way at age 60 just a couple days later. More shockingly was the news that her 84-year old mother Debbie Reynolds had also died while planning her daughter’s funeral — an incredible tragedy.

The musicians and celebrities I admired in my younger years are dying off and it doesn’t seem fair.

Death is never kind, but too many people close to me have passed away in 2016 and my mortality seems even more real than it did in the past.

Enjoying music of my youth and watching movies I grew up with is a means of coping with that grief I have felt this year, but now many of those songs I listen to from those artists only reminds me they are no longer here either.

There’s no escaping death, but I sure do hope that 2017 is a little more kind and doesn’t rip away any more of the fabric of my youth.

Rob Sigler is managing editor of The Oxford
EAGLE. Contact him at rob.sigler@oxfordeagle.com.