This message was posted on Facebook this morning. It sums up the feeling of a lot of Craig’s friends.
Rest in peace brother. We all miss you.
The day that took PO2 Craig Blake from his teammates, friends and family. The day that placed a permanent hole in so many hearts.
The same day that changed the life of my family and me. Even though time has continued to move forward, the pain of that day remains present.
Since that day, I have been lucky enough to truly understand the person Craig was, the strength of his family, the strength of mine and presence of true friends.
Priscilla Blake, has shown the strength and courage to face this world and live a life with her sons. The life that Craig strived for and wanted. The heroes are not just those who serve, they are the families, the wives and the children. Just like I looked up to Craig, I am constantly looking to them for strength.
As I sit back and reflect on the last 5 years, I am struck by sadness and anger that Craig has not been there to watch his boys strive and the pure strength in his wife. The pain in my mothers eyes, the anger in my fathers and the broken spirit of my brother. The pain caused to all my family and friends.
However, I am also overwhelmed with joy, pride and love. As I think of all the support, help and motivation you have all given me. Not once has any of you given up on me or allowed me settle. Through your efforts, kindness and love, you have and continue to help me live a life worthy of Craig and all our fallen.
I have truly witnessed the purest and kindest side of mankind.
So today I only ask this of you all, DO NOT be sadden instead, celebrate life today. Hug those near you, say I love you to those you love, be with your friends, family and brothers. Call someone you haven’t spoken to in a while, go out and do that thing you ALWAYS say your are going to do. Take a moment to see the life you have and be thankful.
I thank you all from the purest and deepest part of my heart. Without all of you being in my life, these last five years would have been very different. Make no mistake, I was broken, in pain and no longer the Chris you all knew…yet through ALL your support, efforts and love, the pieces slowly continue to come back together. It may take another 5, 10 or 20 years but, I will be hole once again.