A LOSS FOR US ALL

Giannone & Renney 1There are just certain people that touch your lives and leave an impression that nothing and no one can replace.

For me that person is Tom Renney, the current coach of the Edmonton Oilers and the head man in New York with the Rangers prior to John Tortorella taking over a couple of years ago.

Tom to me is the very model of class, dignity, intelligence and all the good things that sports are supposed to be about.

When I first started to write about the Rangers, first for the New York Rangers Fan Club newsletter and then later for Dubi Silverstein’s Blueshirt Bulletin and now here at Howlings, the number one person who always encouraged me, helped me when he could and has remained an inspiration to me is none other than Tom Renney.

Given that, in reading the news from Canada today, I read that Tom Renney’s father, Tom Renney, Sr., passed away from a long illness last evening.

I had a private email conversation with Tom about it this afternoon and what I can share with you is that he is doing alright. It’s not like this was unexpected, but that still doesn’t take away from the hurt that he must be feeling.

I know I speak for myself, my family and hopefully all of you as well, when I say to Tom and to his entire family we wish you our deepest condolences and join your family in mourning the loss of your father.

I shared with Tom something that I have carried it in my pocket since I first read it back in the 7th grade. It moved me to tears then because it so perfectly encapsulated everything that I feel about our collective time on this Earth.

It’s a very powerful poem by John Donne. It’s called, “No Man Is An Island.”

No man is an island entire of itself; every man is a piece of the continent, a part of the main; if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as well as any manner of thy friends or of thine own were; any man’s death diminishes me, because I am involved in mankind. And therefore never send to know for whom the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.

Rest in Peace, Tom Renney, Sr.

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