Monday, June 18, 2007
In Memory of my dear friend Danny
I received terribly sad news this morning. My dear friend Danny from Addis Ababa died last week. He collapsed while jogging and died. He was 26 and very healthy, a former soccer player. Probably nobody will ever know what happened to him. Danny was our hired driver last August when my Mom and I were in Ethiopia to bring baby guy home. Danny was far more than a driver to us. He was a tour guide, a translator, a body guard of sorts, and most of all a friend. He answered endless questions for me. I learned so much from him about the city of Addis, the history of the country, the feelings of the Ethiopian people. Danny was only 25 years old when we met him but he was already a great man. He gave freely of his money to the beggars on the street. He especially had a heart for those that were old or crippled. He sponsored children in the city to go to school. He said his pastor and church really encouraged Ethiopians to help one another and that is what he did. Danny was an extremely hard worker. When we inquired about the cost of hiring him for the day I asked him, "what hours does the day cover?". He replied, "the whole day, 24 hours". He wasn't kidding. Anytime we wanted to be picked up or dropped off he was ready to go. His car was the cleanest thing you have ever seen. He washed and cleaned it out daily which included spraying the seats with Fabreeze! He had a great business sense and was well on his way. We spent the week with Danny taking us to appointments, shopping (he was thrilled to hold the baby while I looked at items or paid), and sight seeing. He took us to the Merkato where his father owns a shop. We had the pleasure of seeing Danny's home too. We met his sister and niece and had sodas with him and his family. While at his house he was thrilled to show us photos of many of the families he has driven for. He knew all the kids names and where they live in the states. After I was home Danny and I kept in touch by email. He was thrilled to see pictures of the baby guy and commented on how big he was getting. We planned to see Danny again on our next adoption trip to Addis. I was looking forward to hubby meeting him. I knew my family would be in good hands with Danny driving them. I will miss him dearly. I pray for his family during this difficult time. May his memory be eternal.