Tom Bradbury Reposez en paix
This writer's tragic death will not silence his voice.
Last night I went to the Vocal Creator's Lounge on Facebook where I learned of the tragic death of Tom Bradbury in a fire at his home. Fellow writers have been expressing their dismay on his page and have also been writing tributes to him. Tom often shared his page views and seemed excited when his stories gained readers. He was an encourager and a motivator whether he knew it or not.
I am especially thankful that Tom knew that his art was appreciated while he lived along with the outpouring of love since his passing. Tom won second place in the Vocal challenged "A day in my life." He also had another Vocal creator, Arpad Nagy to write about him in the article "Why Tom Bradbury is a better writer than me." You can read both articles by clicking on the links.
How did the fire start and was it an accident or deliberate came to mind? Does he have a family and how are they coping after this tragedy? With all the comments I read these questions had not been answered but I knew that now was not the time to ponder them. I went to Tom's Facebook page and I immediately felt the void of his absence and realized that his voice would no longer be speaking. There will be no new posts, Vocal articles, or insight on the Vocal Facebook page.
I suddenly realized, however, that what Tom Bradbury has already given to the world will continue to speak volumes. Vocal choosing Tom's article and Arpad Nagy writing about him may have been simply random. There is also the possibility that the Chief Creator, chose this method of letting Tom see that he was valued while he was still with us. The Vocal challenge judges as well as Nagy could have been motivated by the Forces of the Universe without even realizing it. Those reading may not agree but I have a personal experience that brings me to this conclusion..
I wrote an article last year for the Best Friend's challenge and won second place. My story was about my husband and I found myself pouring my emotions into this piece. I recall on three or four occasions asking my spouse to tell me what he thought of the story and reiterating that I loved him and he was indeed my best friend. About 6 months later he had a stroke and 5 months after that he was gone. I am so thankful that I let him and the world know how much he meant to me while he was able to appreciate it. Looking back I believe I was led to write the article as a sort of eulogy and it gives me great comfort. Those who celebrated Tom Bradley while he was living will have something to hold onto.
My personal interactions with Tom were few but we did have one thing in common. We briefly discussed how faith/religion is a part of the daily lives of many Vocal creators but the platform does not allow religious content. Who knows, perhaps in honor of Tom the regulations may be revisited. I have enjoyed reading the many tributes in the wake of the passing of my fellow writer and I am certain they bring comfort to those grieving his passing.
Underneath Tom's Facebook profile photo are these words: "Not all doors are made of wood". I had never heard this quote before but it definitely will stick with me. I could find this wording nowhere on the Internet so I presume they were from the mind of this prolific writer.
"Not all doors are made of wood. Not all keys are made of metal."
This phrase will be interpreted differently by those who read it and I have my own interpretation. In memory of Tom I suggest that each reader ponders the words and find out what their own heart reveals.
I found it amazing that thanks to social media and writing platforms like Vocal that I have amazing power. I possess the ability while seated in my home in Southwest Virginia in the US to connect with another artist who was residing in the Normandy community of France and not even notice the difference. Tom may have been continents away from many of those whose lives he touched yet in spirit they were one.
" Reposez en paix Tom Bradbury", Rest in peace.