Cottonpickin's Eulogy

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Cottonpickin's Eulogy

Nov 6, 2016 | 23:00 1 Richard Chad Crane Eulogy


I'm Danny Cugnet. A long time friend of Chad and Michelle and of Matt and Kelly.

Chad Crane was a father, husband, son, grandson, nephew, cousin...and a friend to all of us here.

He was my very dear friend.

I first met Chad when I was 6 years old. Matt and I struck up a friendship in Grade 1.

He was Matts protector, and his big brother and knew him better than anyone.

When I came to the farm for the first time I suddenly found myself looking up to this guy thinking...."Wow! This is what a big brother is supposed to be."

I could follow this guy anywhere.

He was fun and exciting and enigmatic and whether I was 7 or 18 or 34 he was always at the forefront of something new to me that I hadn't heard of or didn't understand yet or even know existed. He was always ahead of his time with many things.

If it was a toy, no one else knew about yet?
Or what's that book?
teenage mutant ninja what??

How many times did I think to myself with something introduced into my life by Chad,

This is amazing....How did he find this stuff?

What band is that?
What's that song?
What video game is that?
Where did you hear it?
What do you mean that's what we are going to be growing here in 10 years?
How do you know so much about amino acids?
What about silver?
Who? What? When? Where? Why? How?

Conversations with Chad always led to more questions and also could be about anything,

Which is what made a chat with him always interesting and entertaining.

Being in his presence was always so stimulating.

He drew people to him.

I said to Tanya just a few months ago. I bet Chad has phoned me a dozen times in my life and I might have called him a dozen times a week at one point for 10 years straight.

People were just attracted to the guy.

It wasn't always in his nature to reach out because I think so many of us were always reaching out to him, Yet he was so social when we were younger.

He was always out and about and was just a really fun guy to hang out with.
It wasn't boring with Chad around.

Michelle and I were talking and she recollected them going on one of their first dates to Regina which turned into Chad saying, "let's go see if there's anywhere we can fly."
To which she thought..."aren't we just getting supper someplace? "

I can think of many times where Chad and I decided to drive somewhere on a whim and go spend a night out in a different city or province. That spontaneity in him was such an attraction to all of us.

He was a farmer as much as he was a philosopher.

Well read and never one to accept a mainstream explanation for something simply because it was mainstream, he had fascinating insight, knowledge and opinions into financial markets, healthcare and agriculture.

Sometimes these observations were spot on, and in others his opinion was quite radical and out there.

At first blush it could have the ring of conspiracy theory, but often if you listened or chatted further about it, it had well informed research to back it up and always got me thinking.

It maybe didn't prove that Chad was right, but it certainly called into question what the definitive or accepted norm was.

He found it impossible to accept most things at face value. He was always questioning. This was as much a gift as it was a curse for him.

It was news to me that he had in fact had quite a well connected network of followers and friends on different agriculture and commodity forums where he posted and conversed often. He wrote often on a multitude of topics.

His user name and moniker, on the Agriville.com site was "Cotton picken"

The outpouring of messages and grief from these friends and followers when learning of Chads death, many of whom who had never met him in person showed how strong that connection was with him and the respect they all had for his keen mind, whether they agreed with him or not. I was stunned to see how many people he had touched over the years.

Two particular descriptions of Chad that caught me from Agriville.com where was when one friend referred to him as a "Cryptic Savant"

And another remembered him as "A Scrapper and a Genius"

My favourite though is from Larry Weber, the head of Weber Commodities who wrote and I quote:

This has been a sad and surreal day.

Cotton's and mine like/hate relationship went back to his PillyPilsner days - long before Cotton surfaced - probably about 2002/03. We never met personally; however, he listened to me speak in Estevan and sent a one line email the next day. "You're not as much of an asshole as I thought you would be".

Our last email exchange was this year.
Godspeed.

May your family find strength in all those your wisdom has touched.
End quote.

All three comments and descriptions above are very fitting. I think these tributes, and there are literally pages of them in the last two days.....speaks to his intellect and humour, and his ability to connect with people so well on so many levels.

There has been an outpouring to me from so many old friends and acquaintances locally, and from far and abroad who shared condolences and memories. Every single person I have spoke with just couldn't believe this has happened as they tried to reconcile it in their minds.

This was not the Chad that any of us knew. The Chad we knew couldn't have done this. He can't really be gone.

Like I stated above, these gifts and attributes that can make us who we are and what people love in us, are also the things that can make our lives difficult and challenging.

As the saying goes, "We are all our own worst enemy."

Chads illness and diagnosis of a brain tumour in the early 2000's, a tumour that began much earlier than that, gave him a much different viewpoint on life and his own mortality.

I know it was terrifying for him, what with a young family started that he dearly loved more than anything.

That fear and illness grew over the years and fed into different fears and other ailments and sickness that Chad lived with and struggled with much more than any of us ever knew.

That initial diagnosis coincided with around Chad and Michelles marriage. So much uncertainty...so much unknown... yet they both were so happy to be married.

Michelle had the courage to stand by him then. And I really want to acknowledge that Michelle has always had the courage to stand by him and support him.

Chad loved his children so very dearly and Michelle.

Throughout his illness, they were his lantern in the darkness. She was his best friend.

As we all know, no matter how strong love is, illness, often is stronger.

To live life on life's terms is a daily challenge for all of us. And when dealing with his health issues and living with the realities of a brain tumour for fifteen years; that challenge became all the more difficult for Chad to accept; With fatal consequences.

Addiction and depression is a disease that manifests in the mind itself.

I can only think this was accelerated catastrophically as a result of this tumour Chad and his family lived with for so long,

The consequences for him were the creation of a self imposed prison that was stronger and more fearsome than any cancer or heart disease.

Chads disease robbed him of any hope he once had, It caused others around him, especially his family, to suffer with his choices and actions,

It has made it so difficult for us all to understand, as these health problems ultimately slowly changed his personality,
of the person that we loved, into someone we didn't recognize all the time anymore.... it warped his thinking process so much that he didn't even recognize himself some days.

And it is so sinister because if it's just cancer or a tumour or Alzheimer's or something like it we can understand,
we can all say he's sick and we can empathize with him.

When it's something like this that is prolonged and has so many moving parts we can't understand why he can't just "try and get better" or "get help" because it seems like it should be something he can just go and do and get more treatment for.

And then we all start to put it on ourselves.
What could I have done?
What should I have done?
How did it get to this?

Chad was very sick and we didn't have the ability to help him, because he also lacked the ability to help himself.

Living with that relentless ringing in his ears and head for twenty years...I can not imagine.

And to be told that you have a tumour that's growing after you have received intensive treatment for it must have been terrifying for him.

This all fed into his disease and alcoholism.

It must have been so terribly lonely and desperate for him, And not because he wasn't loved by all of us here, and especially by Michelle and their children, but because it made him think that this was his only option.

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Last edited by parsley; Nov 6, 2016 at 23:15.
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Nov 6, 2016 | 23:01 2 On behalf of all of us here, and especially Chad, if you are one of the people sitting in this room suffering silently, know that you are loved, know that you can ask for help, please reach out....know that today you have a choice.

We are all here because we love Michele, Cooper, Max, Livea, Kelly and Matt.
I hope they each know we are here to support them in any way that we can and we are all here for you in whatever you need from any of us.

Chad and I spoke in August one day as he spent some days with us farming this harvest. He spoke about his love for his brother and that he was proud of him. He loved and admired all of Matt's ideas and pursuits over the years.

And I know that Kelly loved him since the day he was born. There are no words that could sum up the love she had for him, just as there are no words that can capture how profound her loss now is.

Chads greatest and proudest accomplishment without a doubt were his three beautiful children. Cooper, Max and Livia, I hope you realize every day how much your dad loved you with all of his heart.

Michelle was Chads partner, confidant, best friend and soul mate. Her priority was always to make a good home and put her family first. She was fiercely loyal to Chad and I know how fortunate he always felt to have Michelle as his wife.

The Chad I knew and remember was a really fun guy to be with. He was sweet, gentle and thoughtful.

I remember the Chad, that as a kid played all over that yard, up and down the stacks of bales and through the barn, or stayed up all night in a board game marathon.

I think of a guy driving around town in a white probe and spending long weekends at the lake with friends.

Or as a father playing a game of Risk with Cooper, or seeding a field and putting in his crop with Max riding along with him. And playing restaurant with Livia. Happy times and moments of contentment for all of them as a family, like a perfect day at the beach in Hawaii with the sand at his and Michelle's feet and their kids playing in the surf.

That is the guy who I want to remember and I want all of us to remember.

That is who I want to tell Cooper and Max and Livia about if they ever want to ask me or hear stories about their dad.

I would be remiss in this if I didn't mention Grandad George. It was an honour to know him in my life. He was a fine gentleman and always an example of class and dignity to all who knew him.

Grandad was an integral part of Matt and Chad's upbringing and an absolute anchor and foundation for the entire Crane family as it's patriarch.

He used to call Matt and Chad "a fine pair of fellers." Not "fellows", but "fellers".

We are all here because we loved that fine "feller" Chad.

I will miss my friend dearly and will remember him fondly always.

Thank you.

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Michelle sent this to me tonight. Pars Reply With Quote
Nov 7, 2016 | 00:22 3 Well that moved me to tears. So profound and very fitting for a man that I felt I knew but had never met, a man I held in high regard for what he contributed to my learning, a man that was wise far beyond his too short years. I would often leave the office after reading cottonpicken's words and think about them as I went about my day's activities.

I offer my deepest condolences to Michelle and the children, my heart breaks for his family and I hold them in my prayers.

John.
Last edited by burnt; Nov 7, 2016 at 19:04.
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Nov 7, 2016 | 00:49 4 Sing Me Home.


http://youtu.be/nTRfs8T-YxI Reply With Quote
Nov 7, 2016 | 03:27 5 Let us all gain strength and wisdom from chad cotton pil pilsner and learn from his life. I message michelle and had a brief message or two. Carpe diem
Last edited by malleefarmer; Nov 7, 2016 at 03:30.
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SASKFARMER3's Avatar Nov 7, 2016 | 07:14 6 I for once am speechless. I got in late last night from harvesting and sat down on the couch and just read
Chads Eulogy.
It brought a tear to my eyes. Since the first text came in the morning after his death I have been having a rough time with all of this.
Again Im speechless.
As your harvesting you have a lot of free time in the cab to think. Conversations you remember and laugh about. Posts that were fun, some that were rough and some down right ugly. You remember all the things. But he is gone and like every thing in life we have to start moving on. We have to rebuild as Michelle and the kids will have to do. The go fund me page has done very well but it could still do better. I hope that a few more will open their wallets just a little and help this wonderful family rebuild.
So today the Sun will rise the wind will blow and our friend Chad will finally be at peace. Farm On!Name:  IMG_5905.jpg
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Nov 7, 2016 | 08:26 7 thanks parsley , for all of this . Reply With Quote
Nov 7, 2016 | 08:43 8 Thanks Parsley, for all you've done thru this difficult time. So deeply saddened. After reading Chads (Cottons) eulogy I realized in death, as in life he is making myself and others think deeper and differently!!! Prayers for the Crane family. Reply With Quote
Nov 7, 2016 | 08:51 9 Watching this happen through agriville I really feel for Chads family. They can know even though I don't know them personally I am praying for them to find a little peace and to feel all the love in the world for them right now. Some of the love is coming from a stranger today. As I type this with tears in my eyes I am reminded how we all suffer through this life but with the love and caring of those around us and by the good things we can do to ease someone else's suffering it makes living in this world a little easier for all of us. So next time someone is being rude or having a bad day let's try to remember we don't know the story behind the suffering that causes people to act the way they do. From one farmer to another rest in peace Chad. And to chads family I hope you know how truly loved you are. Reply With Quote
Nov 7, 2016 | 09:32 10 Thank you for passing this on. Reply With Quote
Nov 7, 2016 | 11:06 11 Beautifully written and is helping me get some closure around Cotton's death.

Rest in peace.

Our thoughts and prayers are will his wife, children, family and friends. Reply With Quote
blackpowder's Avatar Nov 7, 2016 | 19:51 12 I'm trying to cut back on Agriville. Events of last week had me at a loss.
I dont express myself accurately either, and sometimes leads to misunderstandings.
The mental health issue is really close to home for me. And then the thread about farm crisis goes on about income instead of crisis lines. Still pissed.
Read the eulogy this am.
Seemed to say it all better than I could. Learn to listen. Learn to give time. Learn to teach. Learn to help yourself.
God bless. Reply With Quote
Nov 7, 2016 | 22:06 13 BP, I understand, it was so heavy for us too. Just a couple of weeks ago we buried our friends' son because of texting. I don't know how to say it either but it is pretty hard on the constitution. 👬 Reply With Quote