Well Monday evening I went to Janelle's Memorial Service at the Vailar Center in Beaver Creek. The place was packed with estimates of 650 people. Some people came all the way from Europe on just the two day notice. Standing room only. There were some great pictures in the hall of Mike dating back to the early days of his road racing career. You gotta love the good old days when you used the same bike for TTs as road racing and instead of an aero spaceballs style helmet, you just ran a hair net.
There were some great speachs by his closest friends and a great slide show put together by Nat ross with even more pictures, mostly of which were from his racing career. Everyone's stories captured the Janelle we all knew and loved, the crazy, friendly, constantly smiling guy who would always suprise you. My favorite story was when he got hit by a snow plow riding to work as a ski instructor in Vail one winter. He was a little late and cut up when he got there, but was only about one hour late.
There was a reception after the memorial at Meg's family's resturant/bar and I there was hardly room to breathe in there. Of course it was a sad event but it was a great celebration of his life. Everyone that knew him has their own crazy Janelle story but they all have the same jist. Mike doing something crazy and making everyone laugh.
The thing I took away from the service was that Janelle lived every day to the fullest. The guy did more in his short life time then most people could do in two. It sounds like an overused cliche but the guy did live life to the fullest.
We can all learn from Janelle to not take things to seriously, laugh a lot, do all the crazy things you probably shouldn't and make people smile. That's what he would do.....