One of my favorite radio shows is The Moth Radio Hour, which broadcasts stories told live, on stage, by famous and not-so-famous people with a knack for storytelling. One of the most poignant tales I've heard came from a stand-up comedian named Mike DeStefano. This burly former heroin addict from the Bronx, known for his profanity-laced routines, shared his incredibly touching experience of taking his dying wife, Franny, on one last motorcycle ride. He described the liberating feeling on that highway: "For 10 minutes we were normal, and that wind just blew all the death off of us."
According to the folks at The Moth, when Mike told his story back in 2007 in Aspen, "It was one of those moments where it felt like the entire audience was holding hands under the table."
You can see that 11-minute performance on YouTube here.
In tracking down the piece, I learned that Mike had a massive heart attack and died in March 2011. He was only 44. There's a nice tribute to him on The Moth website (jump to the bottom) which ends with, "We mourn him and the stories he had left to tell."
I thank Mike for his goodbye story about Franny and the motorcycle ride.