In Loving Memory of Andy Schrock, 1962-2015 by Anim8dtoon ()
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This image is my personal memoriam to my baby brother, Andy Schrock, who died suddenly just two days after Thanksgiving 2015 in Long Beach, California, from a massive coronary. He was apparently riding his bike when he experienced chest pains; instead of asking passersby on the street for help, he gamely rode his bike to the ER, where he collapsed. The ER doctors and nurses were unable to bring him back. The horrible thing about his death is the fact that I, my other brother and sister-in-law did not know of his death for a full FIVE days because he did not have anything on him indicating next of kin. It was only when his boss messaged me on Facebook asking me where he was that I found out the awful truth, after calling around to the Long Beach PD and the hospitals.
I was absolutely devastated as he and I were very close. That was a very difficult and harrowing holiday season for me and my family knowing that I'd never again see my baby brother, with whom I shared a deep passion for our hometown team, the Kansas City Chiefs NFL franchise. It makes me very sad that he never got to see our beloved team finally capture the Super Bowl Championship 50 long years after the first Super Bowl win in 1970, with the phenom Patrick Mahomes piloting the team to victory over Jimmy Garoppolo and the San Francisco 49ers.
Andy was a phenomenally gifted professional photographer, who had a deep and abiding passion for travel to exotic locales such as Thailand, Cambodia, Malaysia, Cozumel, India and Colombia, and capturing the rich fabric of the cultures in those countries on camera. I and many of his friends loved living vicariously through his wanderings and seeing his incredible photographs on Facebook. But he didn't limit himself to travel when it came to photography. He was one of those versatile jack-of-all-trades who could and did everything with an incredible attention to detail behind the lens: modeling and fashion shoots, advertising, photojournalism, sports, candid portraits, still lifes, animals and nature. In one word, EVERYTHING. He very rarely ever left his beloved apartment in the historic Cooper Arms Building on Ocean Boulevard in Long Beach without his trusty Canon DSLR or his iPhone; if he saw something visually intriguing, he'd whip out his equipment and snap away.
Everyone LOVED my baby brother. He was one of those people who always lit up a room with his infectious warmth, deep-throated laughter and hair-trigger sense of humor that left people convulsing in laughter. Even total strangers were drawn to him immediately, including natives in the countries where he traveled; he loved striking up conversations in cafes, restaurants and other places with the locals. One of my favorite photos is of a little girl in India shyly clutching his hand in India. That was Andy. I know this is a cliché, but he would give people the shirt off his back. As a matter of fact, he went to extremes to help out a Kenyan woman facing deportation here by marrying her in Las Vegas. He did love her, but the marriage ultimately fizzled after a while.
There are always certain people who you never forget because of their magnetism, their joyous outlook on life or their passions. Andy is such a person, and I'm so proud to call him my baby brother. He may be gone from this earthly existence, but he will always be a part of me inside my heart along with our parents and the memories we made together. This Poser image is my tribute to his memory; his photo is on the table with the sunflower, which is the Kansas state flower (we were all born in Kansas City and grew up in Kansas) and the photographs on the wall are some of the iconic images he captured during his lifetime.
I love you, Andy, with all my heart. You were the absolute BEST little brother I could have ever asked for!
Image Comments (3)
Thank you so much, Crender! Creating this in Andy's memory was a real labor of love for me, and it was cathartic as well, helping me work through my grief. It's been nearly five years since he passed and I still miss him very much, but when I think about all the things we did together as a family and so on, it brings a smile to my face every single time!
perpetualrevision () 2:28AM | Wed, 12 August 2020
Such a sweet tribute to your younger brother. Brought tears to my eyes! I'm so sorry for all you've lost, but I'm sure Andy would be very touched by this moving tribute you've created for him.
Thank you so much for your sweet words, Perpetualrevision! It was a huge blow indeed to all of us who loved him. The sudden and unexpected deaths are always the worst kind because you rarely ever have a chance to say goodbye--which is why I feel it's so important to tell your loved ones every single day how much they mean to you, so that you aren't left with lingering regrets. In this case, though, Andy knew he was loved by all of us.
Every year on his birthday (September 28th), I always post a message to his Facebook wall to let him know we're all thinking of him. I love scrolling back through his posts and laughing at the funny skirmishes he loved to engage in with me, my cousins and his other friends. Reading the comments always makes me feel better on those days when life seems to be too much to deal with. Bless his sweet heart always......
Darkglass () 6:46PM | Wed, 12 August 2020
Wow.....a lovely dedication....and so very sad....what a hero taken him self to ER....really nothing i say will ever fill the space or the loss....made me well up....i feel for you....they are never forgotten.....
Thank you so much for your kind comments, Darkglass! To tell you the truth, for a while I was angry with Andy for not having stopped and asked someone on the street for help, or called an ambulance. Had he done that, he very well could be still with us. But I have since realized that things happen for a reason, and I too believe Andy was needed somewhere not on this earth. I was very blessed to have had him as my blood and flesh brother. Nothing will ever take that away from me or my other family members!