A number of years ago I was the primary inventor of a patented antioxidant product, Protandim, that was featured on ABC's Primetime Live and now has a number of pretty successful scientific studies associated with it. I initially developed the product in order to fund church-based orphan rescue and care projects around the world. At the time I had no idea how significant Protandim would later become as a new approach to antioxidant therapy. I look back on that time with a sense of amazement and wonder.
The original company, Lifeline Nutraceuticals (now LifeVantage), was founded by my friend Bill. We then developed the firm together and took it public in 2004. But Bill and I have a history that goes back many years prior, serving together as Merrill Lynch stockbrokers in the early 90's and as principals in a financial consulting partnership, Fair Market Value, a few years later. More importantly, those were years of good friendship. Eighteen years and two states. That's a long time to know a person, especially one who was a thread connecting my life in Texas to my life in Colorado.
Three days ago a white van sat motionless on the frontage road near my home. Its blinking hazard lights brought the necessary attention to it. Inside sat the lifeless body of Bill, apparently dead from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.
Anybody who knew Bill can attest that he was full of life and energy. He always dreamed bigger dreams and believed anything was possible. Never daunted by improbabilities, the man could sell ice to an Eskimo.
I don't know the details that caused him to drive a mile or so from his home, park his car in full sight, and pull the trigger. But I do know suicide in a painfully intimate way. Almost seven years ago my mother took her life. I know how things can take a desperate turn, culminating in a situation where people feel they are left with no choice.
If anybody reading this is in such a place of hurting, call somebody. Call me.
As for Bill, he will be remembered for his impact upon my life, his never-say-never attitude, and his love of family.
The Cowboys and Patriots will now have to make do without one of their biggest fans.
Goodbye Bill. You will be missed.