Thursday, March 17, 2011

My Brother In Law, Sol Laichter, Making a Difference

Life is short, and often we don't fully embrace moments that pass so quickly in our lives. My brother in law, Solomon Laichter passed away this week. He was so many things to so many people. He had a love for music and comedy. His life touched not only his family but every community he practiced in. You see, he was a pharmacist by profession. He was someone that people came to and trusted. I used to watch him as he communicated clearly, patiently, and with care.  He instructed, directed, and counseled not only about the medications he dispensed but about options. He truly empowered people to not only understand their meds but more importantly their diseases.

In his 30 plus years as my brother in law he only wrote me one letter, but it was significant to me. I was at a crossroads, deciding between two life courses. I was a teen trying to choose a direction. My own dad died only a year before so I was without a father. His letter laid out in detail my options. Sol was very bright, and he did what I later discovered was a Ben Franklin list. Sol had beautiful handwriting and his letter flowed onto the page. He was not a man to waste words, and each was clearly measured. At the bottom of that letter was a split page spelling out all the positives and negatives of each career path. His letter helped me make a major decision that would lead to many future blessings. I thanked Sol many years for this letter, and he had forgotten writing it. So like Sol, helping, and then forgetting.

I don't know how many people Sol helped in his lifetime. He never sought appreciation. He never looked for accolades. I only know he made a difference in a great many lives, and in ways he may never have had an opportunity to realize. Sol was a person who deeply cared about his customers, his family, and his friends, nothing more or less than that. He was an inspiration to me, of a man who made a difference through the power of caring, and for that he will never be forgotten.