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Tribute to Ike

Yesterday, I lost a person who was very special to me: Torrey Terrell “Ike” Colvin.  He’s not an ex boyfriend, relative, or classmate of mine but he’s a special as any of these to me.  For those who’ve never lived in a small town, I will explain.

When I was young, my family moved to Aliceville, AL.  My grandparents were from there, and until moving to Aliceville, I had no idea how much extended family I didn’t know. The entire town is like one huge family. You may not know every individual in each family, but you definitely know at least one person in each family.

Ike, as Torrey was affectionately called, was a Colvin. EVERYBODY knows the Colvins.  It wasn’t like they are small-town royalty or like they are always in the news for doing something bad. They are just good people that love each other and everybody else, and when in their presence, you’re guaranteed to share at least a few laughs. Ike was the epitome of being a Colvin.  He was funny, knew everybody, and even if it had been a while since he’d seen you, he’d still greet you with a warm smile.

Torrey Terrell Colvin and his million-dollar smile./Facebook

About two years ago, I was made aware that he was fighting cancer. Cancer.  It took a minute for that to sink in. We do a radiothon for St. Jude every year.  So sadly, I’m used to seeing smaller children with cancer.  I’ve even grown used to hearing of those 40+ being diagnosed with cancer.  But it kinda strikes you when you hear of a man who’s not quite 30 having cancer.  I’m not sure how long he and I had been friends on Facebook, but I started paying closer attention to him after learning of his diagnosis.

The illness took its toll on his physical being, but it never broke his spirit. There were some days where he displayed more difficulty in his fight, but he continued to fight. Ike never looked for pity while expressing frustration but always remained thankful for everything anyone did for him. He made a point to make sure everyone close to him knew that they were loved. I remember when he asked me to dedicate a song to his wife when they celebrated their anniversary on Valentine’s Day. And I’m not even going to start on how much he loved his daughters….

Knowing that Ike is no longer here is a tough pill to swallow.  It brought me great joy to see him take time with his daughters, to show how much he loved his wife, immediate and extended family, and yes…. Even when he clowned on people for various reasons. I appreciate him for being my friend and sharing his life. Seeing him upbeat while knowing the adversity he faced often made my days a bit brighter. I often looked to him for inspiration. Luckily, I was able to tell him that.

I’m glad I gave him his flowers while he lived.  Torrey Colvin will definitely be missed. For that, I cry; but at the same time, he is no longer in pain, no longer has to fight, and he left this world knowing he was loved.  He didn’t lose his fight against the disease that sought to end his life on earth; he just chose eternal life instead. So, there is no doubt that he is resting in peace, storing his jokes, laughter and smiles until we all see him again.

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