In Memory Of The Man Who Gave Me Scars

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Dr. James Vincent Bonnet , MD was an orthopedic surgeon who practiced in Grapevine, Texas. Last night news of his death arrived via text message. He was my doctor of choice for the past decade plus. If Dr. Bonnet had been a general physician, I’d have gone to see him more often. As it turned out, I saw him pretty often, as evidenced by the scars he gave me.

News of his death depressed me. Greatly.

He had lots of pictures in his office. There was a dog – an Airedale Terrier – in most of them. The Wiki page on Airedales says this, “The Airedale is a dog with a great sense of humor. For those who can laugh along with their Airedale, the dog can provide a unique and entertaining company. For those who don’t appreciate being outsmarted by their dog, owning an Airedale can be a trying experience.” I know understand why Dr. Bonnet owned an Airedale. Fitting.

Dr. Bonnet’s death saddens me, but I’m thankful for the scars I bear. The scars he gave me – intentionally. They represent healing, remedy and improved quality of life. They represent the surgeon who gave them to me. They represent the personal sacrifices he had to make to become a skilled surgeon. They represent the financial and time investment he made to become a medical doctor.

But they also represent the man he was. Dr. Bonnet was likable. That was an important component of the man. It separated him from the herd. It made him unique. It made him…weird, too. But in a good way. In the best way possible. I was immediately attracted to his personality. He was engaging. Affable. Likable.

Take advantage of today. Seize the chances you have to appreciate people who are meaningful in your life.

For me and Dr. Bonnet, there are no do-overs. But if there were, I know exactly how it’d go. He’d greet me warmly, tell me exactly what my options are and in seconds my faith and confidence in him would be reaffirmed. And even though he’d hug my wife – which he did every time she was with me – this time, I’d hug him, too.

Note: Gonesh incense burns in The Yellow Studio. No, that’s got nothing to do with anything – except it explains the smoke you see in the video. I buy Gonesh. You should, too.

It’s not the best resolution in the world, but it is the only picture available on the Internet. Dr. Bonnet has one of the smallest digital footprints I’ve ever seen (or not seen). Proof that lots of web real estate does not provide meaningful proof of one’s worth or value in the world. This post and video very well may double his digital footprint. He wouldn’t likely appreciate it, but perhaps his family – and others – will. I will miss him.

Dr. James Vincent Bonnet, MD

Addition February 14, 2011This Facebook page was created after recording this video.

About the author: Randy Cantrell is the founder of Bula Network, LLC – an executive leadership advisory company helping leaders leverage the power of others through peer advantage, online peer advisory groups. Interested in joining us? Visit ThePeerAdvantage.com

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