Saturday, January 9, 2010

Andy Gan - Golfer Alive

i think i was just browsing through friend's pages, and notice a pattern that many of my friends wrote on his wall, Andy Gan, i heard he had cancer a year or two ago and it was a difficult idea to digest because he was only 16 or 17 when i was first introduce to him at the golf course and in between read about his achivements in the local newspaper later about 19 or 20 years old, i heard the news of him being diagnose with cancer, i remember clearly when i heard it i was at a dinner with his friends, golf friends. and omg, i thought to myself he was so young and even though i only knew him briefly, saying hi and hear friends talking about him and his antics, he would be the kind of dear friend to be missed very much if he leave this world, and which he did, after his struggle with cancer the first time he managed once and came back, and i am not sure about this time but its a loss i truly feel. and i saw Andy's facebook page, he is in a relationship with a girl, my heart just dropped to my stomach i sincerely hope she is strong enough to get through this really tough time, we can never truly understand or even fathom the loss the family and herself went through, i believe she will make it through these times.

Andys's parent is making a compilation of eulogies in memory of Andy here, i wish i have something to write to him but i dont. i wanted to share a note i saw a friend of Andy posted on facebook which i think is a little bit and glimpse of Andy's life that we can all learn from and cherish our own life and loved ones and strangers too in times like this, and through Andy's eyes, he sees a way to live when he doesn't have much time, this is a very moving note for me personally.

By Carlos Fabregas
Andy, My Friend Wed at 10:20pm

Andy Gan, a good friend of mine from Malaysia, died on January 3, 2010. Since I don't live there anymore we'd speak only on occasions so this came as a shock to me.

Only a small portion of my friends on Facebook actually know Andy. So here's a little on our friendship: We met through golf tournaments. He was a "professional amateur" (An amateur that practiced pretty much everyday and competed regularly like a professional). I met him for the first time when I was 11, he was 12. He was the top player in the under-12 division in the country; he was always the top or one of the top golfers in the country. I noticed immediately his friendliness and how much he valued people. And he was good. He ended winning that tournament (so what else is new, right? He he he).

So as "professional amateurs" we would travel around the country and around Asia (and actually, around the rest of the world) playing tournaments. Most of the time we didn't travel together but we would see each other there. His family was also always loving. So he was definitely very much a part of my world during my teenager years.

So we grew a friendship over those, sharing memories... lots of golf... lots of hanging out after tournaments... teasing about girls here and there. Actually, when I think about it, Andy often would give me tips and would help me out with my golf game and competing and such. Not a common thing among competitors. He would always wanna build people up... many would do the opposite. (And he would be this way and still be kicking a lot of people's butts)

I think it's safe to say Andy didn't have enemies.

And somewhere in our mid-teens we became closer cause we both learned that both love Jesus and have the same passion for Him. It made so much sense when I learned that about Andy and his family.

We both served faithfully at our respective churches. We both were in the worship teams. We both were heavily involved with the youth ministry... we both ate a lot. We both smiled a lot.

It's funny how we were both so busy with school, golf and church that we never made it to each other's church events when we would invite each other.

Here's one of my favorite moments with Andy that I would like to share: After we learnt about each other love for Jesus, we made it a norm that when we were both at the same tournament we would pray together before we would start competing. And at the end of praying I would go "Lord, and I pray that you would let me beat Andy" and then he would go "and, Lord, make me beat Carlos". And then we'd both say "Amen".

So I saw him the last time I was in Malaysia, which was about 2 yeas ago, I think. Months before I saw him, I heard he got cancer (I was already living in The States by this time) and that he almost died. (In fact, right after I heard that I blogged about it. Ha ha ha!). So I saw him when he made it through the tough times. He was very skinny, obviously, and didn't look too good but he was vibrant.

He told me of how it was a miracle that he survived. And that all his focus was to just share his testimony as much as he can. He was also in the process of writing a book about it (I don't know if he ever finished it). So from that time with him I took it that he was going to be alright. One of the things he was telling me was that the cool thing about losing all his weight and muscle is that he can build his body any way he wants since it's like starting from scratch. I was definitely interested to see what he'd do cause he really worked hard; he was very fit in my memories of him. He was very strong and could freakin' run for days.

I had a blast with him the last time I saw him. One of my best friends and also a good friend of Andy's, Greg, was with us and so was Andy's younger brother. We took a lot of pictures too. Lots of goofy ones. Andy all of a sudden was one of those who would take loads of pictures. Ha ha.

So... I heard about his passing on Greg's Facebook profile. It shocked me. I didn't expect that. This is also the first time someone I cared about has died. I told my family and we cried.

We all have a huge comfort that he is with Jesus in heaven now. I am sure his family and friends have that comfort too.

My prayers go out to Andy's family. He was very loved, I am sure. Thanks for reading.

This is for Andy. My friend.

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