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Correspondence and reprint requests: Eli A. Friedman, State University of New York, Health Science Center at Brooklyn, 450 Clarkson Avenue, Brooklyn, New York 11203, U.S.A.
As a boy, over a half century ago, frightened and quaking over a dreaded confrontation with reality, some unremembered adult reproached me by quoting Shakespeare's Julius Caesar.
Cowards die many times before their deaths;
The valiant never taste of death but once.
Reflecting on the recent loss of my wife Barry, my closest companion for 45 years, Caesar's continued wisdom reverberates:
Of all the wonders that I yet heard,
It seems to me most strange that men should fear;
Seeing that death, a necessary end,
Will come when it will come.
In replaying the years of Barry's combat with inexorable diabetes and Addison's Disease, I recognize how my fear of inevitable defeat became a controlling …