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Rest in peace, my friend

July 31, 2012 - Steve Murch
A good man died today. A man with two school-aged kids shouldn't die. A mother should never have to bury her children, they should always outlive their parents. Yet today, a good man with school-aged kids died today, and his mother is left to bury him.

Todd McConnell was a good man. He was one of the first friends I had in Alpena. We worked together for several years at Alpena IGA (now Neiman's Family Market), then for a few years here. We shared many laughs together and spent years having a great time. For a while, I was closer to Todd than I was to my brother. If not for Todd, I likely wouldn't know many — if not most — of the friends I have now. It might even be safe to say that some of those same people might not know each other either if not for Todd. He just had that way about it.

To find out what type of person Todd was, you only need to go back three weeks ago to the benefit for him to help defray the costs of his battle with bile duct cancer. Hundreds of people turned out for the benefit. And while that is the way Alpena is, turning out to help others, more than anything it spoke of what people thought of Todd and how they appreciated him in their lives.

A man isn't supposed to die in his mid-40s, yet Todd McConnell did just that. Life isn't fair, and we all know that. But it still hits hard when life takes that unfair turn. He was a son, brother, uncle, cousin, friend, coach and more.

A good man died today and he will be missed by his family, his friends and countless others he may have touched along the way.

Rest in peace Todd McConnell. You will be missed, and we are all better off for having known you.


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