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The Bellman

My dad battled a rare cancer for more than 6 years that affected his intestines, stomach and liver. As Dad’s last day approached, I wanted to be by his side when he took his last breath. But that didn’t happen.

I was in Seattle for a speaking engagement, staying at the Seattle Airport Marriott Hotel. I’d shaved and showered, and put on my coat and tie when the phone rang. Thinking it was my ride to the convention, I picked up the phone and said, “I’ll be right there.” Fifteen seconds of silence later, my younger brother’s voice pierced the quiet. “Danny?” Shocked, I answered, “Paul? What’s up?”