It has taken me quite long to finally write about it. It just makes me sad to think about it and I basically want to avoid it.
I want to avoid thinking about having lost a close friend, a fun, playful, professional, energetic, humble, caring and always helpful friend. He was a person who always put other people first, who was living the concept of service to others, and who was just a wonderful human being.
I miss him.
At the same time, I do remember all the great times we had. He truly loved what he did and inspired thousands of people to create a better life for themselves. Yes, his work at Oracle impacted literally thousands of people around the world. For him, it was more than a mere job ... and thus influenced so may others.
I remember so well when so many of us started out in the APEX forum around 2006. Joel and the other team members were there ALL THE TIME and helped us in so many ways. This inspired us so much that we felt obligated (in a good sense) to give back and share what we have learned. Most of all, it was Joel who created this worldwide community tirelessly ... and he molded such an exceptional APEX team.
His impact will never be forgotten ... he has changed so many lives for the better ... we will always remember him.
I will always remember him.
In so many ways, he was the brother that I always wanted to have. We could have deep conversations just as well as having fun together at many conferences, the KScope parties were the best 🙂.
Since reading the book "conversations with God" I have a totally different view on our time here on Earth. All fear is gone, there is a much bigger picture to see. But even when I understand the bigger plan and know that he will be fine wherever he might be ... it hurts very much.
We often underestimate our impact on other people when there are no expectations, only a presence that is pure and authentic. It can resonate in our hearts and make a huge difference.
Thank you, Joel.
I really love the video that Lauren posted, it captures Joel's personality very nicely. It is really hard to describe a person, the personality, body language, movements and energy. But this video captures it very well:
And here are some impressions that I have captured throughout the years. Unfortunately, I don't have that many pictures of him and with him ... I "captured" it for the most part with my mind only, enjoying the experience at each time.
The first time we all met in 2008 in Orlando, the first time I spoke at KScope:
Hanging out after KScope 2014 in Seattle:
The party at KScope 2015
KScope 2017 in San Antonio, once again with his lovely wife, Kristin.
May you rest in peace, Joel.