Two years later, the cool guy was rotating through the. Pediatrics floor as a surgical resident, and he turned out to be smart and patient, too. We officially met, working with a family whose son was in the hospital, needing surgery. I walked by the room where this little fellow was staying, and heard a very upset kid, a stressed out mom, and being me, I detoured in to room to see what was going on. The funny guy, Neal Gorrin, was trying to talk to the family about a procedure he needed to do, and the kid was not in favor of the plan. I shooed Dr. Gorrin out of the room, and proceeded to work with the kid, his mom, to calm everyone down, and see how best to help the patient. And guess what? The kid was not in favor of my plan, either! In general, social workers don't tell doctors to get out of a patient's room, but it was the 80's, I was a sassy confident thing, and he found my efforts quite entertaining!
Neal and I met later to talk about what happened, he became my dating advisor ( not his true calling), my friend, and somehow talked me into moving with him to San Francisco in 1989.
We were so fortunate, we got married, had a son and daughter, moved to the suburbs, and lived a sweet and happy life together. Neal's love for life was contagious, his laugh was loud, and genuine. Neal had a gang of friends from kindergarten. "The Ladera Boys" that.met at least once a year to play poker, recreating the weekly poker games they had in high school! Neal's love for his family, his parents, brothers, nephews, nieces was endless, he welcomed my family and friends into his life with open arms.
Most of all he loved his kids, and he loved me. This man, this healer, this mensch got sick in 2013. When diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, he never complained, he never felt sorry for himself, he just kept going. Our family pulled together, took care of each other, and when he needed us, we were there. He died four year later, and I walk for him.