Remembering My Friend Don Rhymer - Los Angeles News | FOX 11 LA KTTV

From Jeff Michael

Remembering My Friend Don Rhymer

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Don Rhymer was a celebrated screenwriter and producer whose credits include Rio, Rio 2, Surf's Up, Big Mama's House, The Santa Clause 2 and much more. Don Rhymer was a celebrated screenwriter and producer whose credits include Rio, Rio 2, Surf's Up, Big Mama's House, The Santa Clause 2 and much more.

Tonight I will end my day with a group of guys at a steak house in memory of a man to whom I owe a lot.

It was one year ago that we all lost our friend, Don Rhymer. I could tell you how great a man Don was; how he was always there for us, always with a loving ear and a simple reply that just seemed to fit what we needed to hear. But what strikes me is how 365 days lays barely a glancing blow to numb the loss of my friend. I didn't expect I would miss Don less after being without him for a year but, at the same time, I feel I have not done the work, not processed the loss enough to be of much help to his amazing wife and kids.

How are we supposed to mark the anniversary of a loss? A moment of respect? A prayer? A smile in recognition of the good times? Actually that last one resonates. The last thing Don wrote on a piece of paper to his family in the hospital was, "Focus on the good." I remembered those words a few minutes ago as I felt the squeeze of fear and uncertainty over a family member going through a dark time. I won't go into the details because I know all of you have been in the swirl of not knowing how life will play out; caught between hope and despair.

What I do know is that the more that is stripped away, perhaps the older I get, the more I realize how little things in life really matter. We all can make do with much less than we think-- most of the world's population never knows more than barely getting by-- so we have nothing to complain about. I almost lost two of my three children this year; almost, but I didn't. My sons are alive and, under God's grace, well.  So as I raise a glass in honor of Don, I will not think of the uncertainties I can't resolve nor of the losses nor the fright of near losses. I will focus on the good. Not just because that's what Don wanted but because it's a good piece of wisdom that we would all do well to consider.

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