I lost a friend today. Kendall, member in longtime standing of the Joshua Smith group, aka The Gang, has died.

He stayed home last Friday, apparently with the flu, which struck me as odd at the time since we’re through the flu season. When Monday rolled around I was told that he was still sick and his caregiver Clint had taken him to the hospital.

Kendall had been throwing up a lot but he was able to walk into the hospital on his own. He suddenly had trouble breathing so they laid him down on a table, stuck a tube down his throat, and he died right then and there. Resuscitation was futile.

I got the news this morning and I’ve been driving around in a haze, thinking about Kendall as a poet, a singer, and a man with a great, deep voiced laugh. When he gave you one of his hand-written poems you knew it was created just for you alone. When he sang loudly from the back of the bus I would tease him saying Don’t make me call 911! I also called him Ken Doll all the time, and to his credit, I don’t think he ever really got the joke. r.i.p. buddy, you will be greatly missed.

I’ve been driving these guys back and forth across the valley for ten years now. The memories formed from a couple of thousand trips across Teton Valley, in snow and sun, are priceless to me. I love my gang.

Categorized as The Bus


  1. Sorry for the loss of a friend.
    Sounds like something with his pancreas (throwing up a lot is a sign of pancreatitis.) I had to sit in the hospital with a tube down my nose for five days, no food and only ice to suck on. It is always a shock when a friend falls ill or dies. They will always be with you every time you think of them. They are there, right next to you in another dimension.

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