All News & Blogs
Widow of Michael Kosior has been amazed by the number of people her husband impacted during his 38 years on earth.
Date published: 8/30/2012
One was a co-worker who saw Mike daily, but never talked to him.
"He was a big inspiration to me, just observing him from a distance," wrote Emmanuel Addai in a letter to Susan. "His attitude to work and his profound etiquette were inspiring."
Another was Mike's boss. She was devastated by the news, and followed the office tradition of taking a walk to clear her head.
A homeless man saw her and asked what was wrong. She told him about Mike's death, and he knew exactly whom she meant. Mike talked to the homeless man regularly on his way to work.
"I told Mike's parents we'll never have any idea of the number of people Mike impacted," Susan said.
'AND THEN IT HAPPENED'
Up until dinnertime, the day of July 12 was just like any other. Mike got home about 6:30 p.m., did some laundry and sat down to eat with Susan and Leah.
"And then it happened," Susan said.
Mike made a face, and Susan noticed him slumping over. She helped him from the chair to the floor.
"He didn't blink, he didn't make a noise," she said.
He stopped breathing.
She called 911 and gave CPR before the rescue squad arrived.
The seizure apparently shut down his brain and was related to Norrie disease, a rare genetic disorder that caused Mike's disabilities.
He hadn't complained of feeling badly that day, and he didn't suffer regularly from seizures.
In their 10 years of marriage, Susan knew of only one other incident, in October 2009. Mike collapsed in his upstairs office, then came downstairs and told Susan about it.
Susan has no idea what she and Leah will do. The family didn't have life insurance, but Susan will get some death benefits from Mike's job. She said there's about a two-month delay in processing them.
She is getting Social Security survivor's benefits for herself and Leah.
Susan would like to stay in the Fredericksburg area and in the home she and Mike shared, if she can afford it. Her mother, Susan Brogan, lives in Florida and has been in Stafford with her since Mike's death.
If the two decide they get along well enough, Susan said, laughing, they could convert the downstairs into an apartment for "Nana," whose rent would help cover expenses.
Despite how unsettled her future may be, Susan said she feels calm. She has already experienced the worst thing that could happen to her.
A bigger concern is that people won't remember her husband the way she will, for his smile and love of life.
"My No. 1 fear is that people are going to forget him," Susan said, "and I've been assured that's never going to happen."
Cathy Dyson: 540/374-5425