In Memory of My Friend, Kelly Plasker
I don’t think it's proper for me to write about Kelly's personal struggles. The best I can do is tell you how we got together for The RockShow.
I guess I met Kelly out at the Haunted Houses. I believe she had posted something online about wanting to visit or something, so I invited her out. She was a single mom with two kids (I didn’t know about the third at the time) that hobbled up with a cane. I sent them through and they loved it.
Later on, Kelly was undergoing a hip replacement and things were not going well (it eventually was three back-to-back before the procedure took). I could tell from her Facebook posts that she was reaching a place that I had been before. There is a point when someone is in the hospital that a lot of the friends and family start drifting off, thinking they’ve made their one customary visit.
Being a morning guy, I thought I’d visit her in the hospital (which was really random because I barely knew her). I’d head over to the hospital at 6 or 6:30 in the morning and take her a coloring book to occupy her mind and try to educate her on chocolate (which I think she actually gave to her kids).
Eventually, Kelly was released from the hospital, and I too moved on, using my time to help out at the Farmer’s Market. I did reconnect once with Kelly when she needed a wheelchair so she could go to her kid's events. We had a spare one we had rehabbed out at the park. Other than that, life went on.
Then came the day that Heathen decided to move onto Florida. I was informed that I was most likely moving to afternoons and a syndicated morning show would be brought in. I was pretty happy about it and made plans to join my comedian friends at the local open mics. At what I would consider to be "the last minute," I was told that there was "no way" they were breaking up The RockShow and I would be staying in the a.m.
I figured I would have as much luck finding someone local as they would finding me someone to work with, so I reached out to Plasker. I had known that she had at least done some a.m. talk.
Surprisingly enough, Kelly and I were no. 1 in our first ratings book, and a year later were no. 1 again. We were literally still riding this high when this tragedy happened.
As you’ve probably noticed, this is more about me or us than about her. I don’t feel like that’s my business to share. We were best friends from 4 a.m. to 9 a.m., and we mostly went about our own lives in the hours in between. This is not to say we weren’t very close, because we were, but after the pressure cooker of mornings, we pretty much had enough of each other until the next day.
The last time we talked, she was in great spirits. The last time she texted, I thought she was having physical problems. The last time I texted her was to help her get caught up on some work and encouraged her to "do it for your Pops." (She tried to call me Wes, she just couldn’t seem to do it).
I can't tell you what it was like to know or work with Kelly. I just can't. It's too much for me. I have to take things like these and bury them in a dark place in my head. I'm sorry I can't be more personal with this. I thought we'd be talking about Bill & Ted and what we ate over the weekend right about now.
All I can really say is, we made each other laugh for a couple of years. I wish it would have been a few more.