As you get older, a scary thing happens. People you know personally, and those you think you know because they touched you deeply through their work, start to die. It makes you think about something you might have rarely considered in your twenties -- your own mortality.
It's been a tough couple years for me in that regard. It seems that every month somebody passes who made an impact on my life. Often they had no direct knowledge of how much they, through their work and being, meant to me.
In many cases, you don't know the names of the people I am referring to. If you live in Pittsburgh, you share my emotion over the tragic deaths of radio personalities Laurence Gaines and Doug Hoerth. If you're a hockey fan, the death of Wade Belak likely touched you. Google these names. Their stories deserve broad consumption.
Earlier this year, a more mainstream figure passed away. I cried when it happened. Clarence Clemons, the central figure in Bruce Springsteen's E Street Band, died. On the news, Springsteen released a statement. In it, he wrote:
He was my great friend, my partner and with Clarence at my side, my band and I were able to tell a story far deeper than those simply contained in our music. His life, his memory, and his love will live on in that story and in our band.
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The spirt, the flow, the power, the glory, the intensity, the perfection of a great band. It lives on. And I don't think the story's any different in relation to a great company.
Just as Clarence Clemons, via his memory, will continue to inform the story the E Street Band tells, Steve Jobs' legacy will help direct those who will continue to direct the greatest company on the planet.
Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.