This was originally posted on March 21, 2013 as 'Mike Darr Would Have Turned 37 Today'. The age he would be and the age of his son have been updated to reflect the years which have passed.
Today used to be Mike Darr's birthday.
Mike Darr's last birthday was his twenty-fifth; eleven months before the accident that took his and his best friend's lives. Nobody knows what would have become of Darr if he chose not to drink and drive that night in 2002. He could conceivably still be playing, becoming a Padres legend on the field, or perhaps bouncing around the league like teammate Mark Kotsay wound up doing. Or maybe he'd be retired by now, at home with his wife who never would have gotten remarried, and coaching his sons. As it stands now, his oldest son is 21 and played quarterback and outfield at his dad's old high school.
No, none of us know what Mike Darr would be up to today if he'd called a cab that night. And I hope I never have to wonder that about any of you.
Don't drink and drive.
Just don't. There's no excuse. You can call a cab or call a friend, and if it really comes down to it you can walk. It might be a terrible inconvenience but it's nowhere near as inconvenient as being dead.
Happy birthday, Mike Darr. Wish you were here to celebrate it.