Person:Darrell Flanagan (2)

Darrell Gene Flanagan
m. 18 APR 1948
  1. Darrell Gene Flanagan1957 - 1999
Facts and Events
Name[1] Darrell Gene Flanagan
Gender Male
Birth? 28 Jan 1957 Cincinnati, Hamilton, Ohio, United States
Medical? Underlying causes of death: Progressive respiratory failure Concentric biventricular myocardial hypertrophy (Enlarged heart) COPD, Emphysema
Death? 5 Sep 1999 Russell, Kentucky, United StatesCause: Acute Cardiac Dysrythmia (Sudden Collapse)
Burial? 9 Sep 1999 Russell, Kentucky, United StatesConcord Cemetery

_DCAUSE: Acute Cardiac Dysrythmia (Sudden Collapse)

_DCAUSE: Acute Cardiac Dysrythmia (Sudden Collapse)

In loving memory of my brother, Darrell Gene Flanagan. Darrell died yesterday, apparently of a heart attack, at age 42. Darrell had a hard life with many health problems during the past decade and he had a drinking problem. As someone who enjoys two or three drinks before bed at night, I'm not ashamed to say he drank far more than he should have. Cigarettes were probably a far bigger factor in his death - tobacco has killed many folks. It's a road that I've seen too many of my friends and family take over the years. And I suppose that the hard drinking is also part of what took his life in the end, a lifestyle encouraged by many factors and certainly with no help from the society around him to overcome those personal demons.

While I don't encourage excessive drinking, I do want to comment on the issue. The health problems that drinking causes, both physical and psychological, are certainly not a low cost to pay for a few moments of euphoria - if indeed it can be called that - or escape from the realities of this world. Personally, I rarely drink before 9 or 10 PM, and stay in my home. Except for Irish pubs and other folksy places, I just don't care for bars or nightclubs. The smoke, the noise, the atmosphere outside my home just doesn't appeal to me. I prefer to enjoy thecompany of family and friends, perhaps listen to a bit of music, maybe watch a video or dvd.

Over the years, Darrell has had a number of run-ins with what passes for "the law" in Russell County. Nothing serious, just drinking. Not even disorderly, just drinking. Darrell should have known better than to get out after having a beer or two - once they have your number most small-town cops have nothing better to do than watch to catch you out somewhere where they can get you. Small-town cops and legal authorities don't have the skill to catch real criminals. Murderers who shootlittle girls in the face walk away free. Hell, they kill people on the road in drunken stupors and the authorities screw it up so bad thattheir trials are overturned. But the judges are good at putting elderly mothers in jail for contempt when crying upon a son's sentence or someone who has just had a bit to drink. Myself, I don't drink and drive and I don't condone it - too many innocent folks are hurt. If you hurt yourself that's between you and whatever beliefs you have, but hurting others who had no part in it is something else. The fact is, however, that you can be picked up in Jamestown and most other small townsin the state - and I'm sure elsewhere as well - for just having had afew drinks and being on a public sidewalk or road. Darrell hasn't driven much for several years, except to borrow Dad's car to go to the doctor. Yet he was arrested twice in the past two months. Not for drunk driving. Not for being falling down drunk and passed out. Not for being disorderly. Just for having had a few drinks and being in a public place. Last month he was arrested walking the mile from my father's house to my father's apartment in town. Friday night, my father was asleep and he walked across the street from Dad's apartment to use a pay phone to get someone to pick him up and take him home. And they arrested him. And the folks that I've spoken too have told me that he had been asleep before going to the phone and didn't even seem drunk when they picked him up - yes he was released immediately. Well, they won't be able to arrest him any more.

Darrell and I have ancestors who fought for this country in many wars. Direct ancestors fought in the Revolutionary War and WWII, kin fought in the Civil War for the Union and to keep this country together. But I don't believe that they fought for the Orwellian state that exists now in most parts of the country - that is no longer concerned withthe protection and welfare of it's citizens, but rather with the protection of privledge, with the imposition of morality and lifestyle in jack boot conformity,.... I believe that they fought for individual liberty and freedom from tyranny, they fought for a Union that stood forthe people. My own health problems stem mainly from my weight and areaggravated by severe back pain, which could probably be corrected if insurance would pay for an MRI and other procedures; however, at leastit is not illegal to be fat - yet!

I don't know what happens at death. Maybe we come back again as Buddhists and many other religions believe. Maybe there's some other-worldly plane of existance where our essence continues. Maybe the machine that is our body just stops working. Socrates suggested that in death either he would be able to converse with the great philosophers and great minds that had preceded him from this world or that he would sleep forever. I am sure of this much: Darrell is at peace now and he won't have to worry about the "heroic" men behind badges any longer. Darrell, rest in peace now Bro.... Someday we will all be together in Concord Cemetery, with Eliza and Slaughter, with Enoch and Harriet, with Arcillus and Granny Vick, with Mervin and Margaret, with Mom. With so many generations of Flanagans. I love you Brother.

Gary Flanagan Monday, 6:30 AM, Sept. 5, 1999


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