last day (57 days later) » 

1:43 AM
Like most people on the site, I didn't know affable personally. I talked to him in chat a couple of times, and loved all his content on the site, but to me he'll always be the one I could never catch up to in points, no matter how hard I tried. I believe he's in a better place now, with every fiber of my being, and I hope to see him there one day, and finally meet him in person.
I only knew the guy through Christianity.SE, yet here I am, mourning his death.
In life, he probably didn't even respect me as a top Christianity.SE contributor, but I really respected him. Now he is gone. Hopefully to Heaven.
R.I.P. Affable Geek.
2:14 AM
I often wonder if some of the other users we've had suddenly leave without warning died also.
Without an update to the profile or something I don't know how we would ever know.
I don't even know most of your real names.
^^^ R.I.P. Affable Geek
1 hour later…
3:36 AM
@fredsbend With thousands of users the odds are pretty good that someone has stopped participating because they have died. Occasionally a relative or friend will write in to inform us, but this is the first time we've had a profile update that I know of.
4:05 AM
I remember the days when Affable Geek succinctly answered my questions. I always enjoyed his unique humor.
Wow, he's only 43 years old when he died!?! So young!
1. I'd like the know how he died. It would help my grieving process.
I wonder if he died from cardiovascular disease. He does look a bit chubby.
He died on February 14, 2015! That's Valentine's Day! The day on the Western calendar that symbolizes romantic love!
2. Does the fact that his spouse/significant other updated his StackExchange profile mean that he left a note with his StackExchange credentials? And if so, that must mean that StackExchange was a very significant part of his life.
4:26 AM
@DoubleU Wow, he was younger than me.
@BruceAlderman How old are you?
@BruceAlderman Only three years older.
I find death and unconsciousness a disturbing event, so I usually try to diverge to more relevant things.
The narrative of the future of the universe always freaks me out.
4:54 AM
I'm still at an age where death in general is very surreal. I've only had a few people I knew die, but it's always hard. Jon Ericson linked to AG's Easter blog post, where he says, "O grave, where is your victory? O death, where is your sting?" These words have been really helpful to me at similar times. As Jon said, Michael had a hope.
3 hours later…
7:40 AM
@JimG. My SE account logs in automatically on almost every computer and device I use. Perhaps Affable's was the same.
@JonEricson If they happen to be such a profound part of the community, as Affable was, how have other communities responded?
@Mr.Bultitude Young 20's right? I'm only 28, but just the difference in experience about death from 20 to now for me has been profound. For me, it has been interesting to see how I respond to different persons' deaths.
A real shocker for me was a man I went to school with. I believe I was 23. We were sort of friends, but the fact that he died so young and suddenly was mind rattling.
It was hard to comprehend it. It was hard to believe it. It still is sometimes.
That was extra sad, because it was a car wreck with two other young men. One I knew his name and face, but that's about it. The other I did not know. He was the driver and only survivor.
I still see his mother's face when I gave a few words at the memorial.
She was so grieved. I don't remember exactly what I said, but it did seem to bring her a bit of comfort.
I only knew Affable Geek in my meanderings around SE - my condolences to his family and friends!
Anyway, @Mr.Bultitude, you're going to end up losing people close to you eventually.
The closest to me so far was my Grandfather about two years ago.
When someone you see nearly everyday is just gone, your life doesn't change, but it does become different.
I have, unfortunately, lost a lot of loved ones in recent years.... and I am only 38
It's hard to explain. All you really have is to just move forward.
@SabreTooth Yes. How have you typically grieved in those times?
@fredsbend by my self - I find, for me, going for a walk in the forest nearby or performing some scientific experiments helps to keep me going
7:52 AM
The walk sounds common. The experiment, not so much. Does your regular work entail experiments?
yes, I tend to throw myself into work
Avoiding grief through work is very common, especially among men.
I suspect I would do that if I ever lost my wife.
Either that or watch TV all day.
fortunately my scientific work involves walking in the nearby forest
TV, especially SciFi, helps me forget about life. I do it often to de-stress. I bet it would work for grief too.
@SabreTooth That's cool.
@fredsbend The cookies for stackexchange lasts for months. My present cookie has the expiry date as "Tuesday, August 25, 2015 1:08:07 PM". So probably someone at home can easily access his account from his personal computer right now.
7:56 AM
@fredsbend my lab fits in my backpack
8:35 AM
I hope this isn't some horrible joke. Not cool if it is.
ummm no, you asked how I cope with grief, I told you - and my lab is a portable solar-atmosphere rig of my own design
i'll go now before I get accused any further - my original and only intent in posting in this room was to give my condolences and will leave it at that.
I don't think this can be a joke.
But I'm still shocked to know that our top user is no more.
Now who's gonna answer some tough questions in C.SE for us?
@SabreTooth I was referring to Affable's death, that it might be a horrible joke. It was not a reply to any of your messages.
I believe you are and were sincere in your messages here.
@Mawia We'll see. One thing about Affable was that he was also quick to answer. He beat me to so many answers that I didn't even bother posting at all.
9:29 AM
From his account in Politics.SE it looks like his last login was "Feb 14 at 2:38"
10:18 AM
@fredsbend What do you mean "It doesn't change"? It very well might change! It depends on your relationship with the recently deceased.
@fredsbend That's a good point. But how did his wife know that StackExchange was such a significant part of his life that she should notify the community? My wife wouldn't know to do that unless I left a note. Would yours?
@JimG. My wife knows my rep points in C.SE. and even encourage me to participate. But she's not so familiar with the internet so she won't be able to notify the community. :)
10:36 AM
@JimG. Maybe. My wife thinks like that sometimes and she does know of my fondness for the site and the community.
@JimG. I'm talking about the denial stage, I think. Depending on the relationship, you kind of just go on with life for a while before you finally start to realize what's happened and the gravity of the situation.
3 hours later…
1:49 PM
@fredsbend I did a good bit of searching/verification yesterday and can say with some certainty that this is not a joke.
2:15 PM
Sometimes, when people think you're dead and print an obituary about you, you can find out what people really think about you.
It happened in history before.
My dad knew two classmates at different points of his life. The first classmate dared everyone else to swim under the boat and come back up again alive. Everyone did, except the darer. For some reason, he mysteriously vanished. He was an only child, so you can imagine the pain from his parents.
The second classmate died accidentally, because he thought he could use an umbrella as a parachute. He fell to his death at a stairwell.
2 hours later…
4:15 PM
@fredsbend Well, there was Aaron Swartz:
Q: Please do something special for Aaron Swartz account

Soner Gönül Possible Duplicate: How should a user’s death be handled? As we all know, Aaron Swartz was found dead in his apartment. Aaron committed suicide probably because of the court case againist the government. Please do something special his Stackoverflow account. That's only thing what I w...

I don't know if it will help anyone, but I wrote a series of posts on my personal blog about the death of my younger brother. Start with Good Friday.
@fredsbend Yup. I've had several people that I knew die, but none I was too close to. The hardest was a girl who committed suicide, who was the sister of two of my close friends.
@JonEricson Thank you for sharing. It must still be a bit raw; it hasn't even been a year. I'm surprised at how articulate you were able to be about the very next day.
4:31 PM
@Mr.Bultitude I discovered that my fall-back response in difficult times is writing. I wrote a lot about it initially and worked through a lot of the grief that way. I'm not looking forward to Good Friday and Easter this year, however.
It also helped to connect with family. Between my wife and I, we flew back to Virginia 3 times last spring. I'm sitting here feeling guilty about not talking with my dad recently.
5:29 PM
@Mr.Bultitude There are suicide prevention programs. It is hard to estimate the effectiveness of these programs, because suicide is extremely rare.
@JonEricson Not even the Easter Bunny?
6:10 PM
@DoubleU Both stories are sad but that second one was Darwin award material.
How old was he? To actually believe that an umbrella could allow you to parachute is no better than believing Daffy Duck can take an anvil to the head from fifty feet. It's cartoon work. And he didn't even start with a manageable height, like maybe a chair, then the table, then the counter.
It's pretty easy to learn very quickly that an umbrella cannot be used as a parachute.
I know because I tested this as a young child, like I'm sure many children have.
@DoubleU It's the second leading cause of death for ages 10-24. Extremely rare? I can think of three people I knew around my age to have died, and all three were suicides.
@JonEricson A very interesting man. Too bad we lost him.
Q: How should a user's death be handled?

Chas. OwensIt is a bit of a morbid concept, but having recently had a friend die unexpectedly and having to deal with the online repercussions of this event has gotten me to thinking about what should happen to my accounts when I kick the bucket. I haven't had any great insights yet, but here are some thin...

It seems the official SE policy is to do nothing special.
Meta posts and chat rooms are obviously okay, but like a special banner on the profile is not going to happen.
But SO's sense of community is very light in comparison to C.SE I think. Those reactions are with concern to what they should do with the profile. A very administrative approach.
Honestly, that thought never crossed my mind. It might have eventually, but right now, I'm still responding to the shock.
7:22 PM
@Mr.Bultitude Relative to the whole population.
@fredsbend I have no idea. It's based on hearsay. I think my dad witnessed it.
2 hours later…
9:04 PM
Please forgive me if I'm overstepping, but I just want to say how sorry I am for your loss. I'm a born-again Christian who has learned from your site, but am not knowledgeable enough to contribute! Obviously Affable was a huge blessing to you, as I'm sure you were to him. I pray you'll feel God's comfort as you mourn the loss of your friend.
9:44 PM
I'll pray for him and his family. Eternal rest grant unto him O Lord, and let perpetual light shine upon him. May he rest in peace. "For if we live, we live for the Lord, and if we die, we die for the Lord; so then, whether we live or die, we are the Lord's".

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