Zach was diagnosed at just the tender age of 14 and by 17 he was given less than a year to live.
During his last year on Earth, he wrote this beautiful song, Clouds.
The lyrics are amazing:
"And we'll go up, up, up
But I'll fly a little higher
We'll go up in the clouds because the view is a little nicer
Up here my dear
It won't be long now, it won't be long now
If only I had a little bit more time
It only I had a little bit more time with you."
Anticipating his death, Zach imagines, as a soul, flying up in the clouds--where the "view is a little nicer."
And he knows, time is short--and "it won't be long now"--and although he'll be able to see his family, friends, and loved ones from the clouds, he wishes he "had a little bit more time" with them on Earth.
Death is hard at any age, but it is especially tragic when it is a child or someone who hasn't been able to fully live--and experience so many things or make all their contributions.
But at any age, the loss of a good person, a kind person, a loving person--is a loss for all of us, left behind.
Zach, some day we'll see you in the clouds with the other good people--it should be at the right time, merciful, and when our job here is done.
It is okay to love life and the special people around us and to miss them terribly when we go, but we all go to the same place...to be with G-d, and each other, in Heaven.
In the after life, we can fly higher, with a nicer view, and reflect on how we did with the precious gifts and time given to us--whether long or short--before being called spiritually home again to our perfect maker. ;-)