Depending on how you measure accomplishments, you would say he had nothing--or everything. I think he believed he had it all. You see, his measure of success was his family. He adored his family, each and every one of them, regardless of what they had or hadn't done, or said, or believed. None of those things mattered to him. What mattered was that they were family and therefore worthy of love and acceptance.
His definition of family was wide too. Blood was the beginning, but love and caring was by far the most of it. There were a large number of people in attendance today, including myself, not related by blood or marriage, but related because we loved him. We're all family because he brought us together and showed us what family really is.
With such a significant linchpin gone, you'd think if would be a solemn occasion, and there were tears and loss and pain. There was also a lot of laughter and thankfulness that we had been privileged to know him and be drawn into his family.
The newest member of the family, just eleven days old, was also in attendance. He slept through it all, but everyone who saw him, who came within his circle, thanked his parents for bringing him and reminding them that life continues, and brings joy with it.