Grapevine Online Exclusive

Published August 2014.

My Brother's Keeper

He came to realize that he was powerless over both his own alcoholism and that of his brother

He collapsed in the parking lot of a shopping mall that spring. “I’m not ready to die,” he moaned, as the emergency response team prepared to transport him to a hospital. He died later that day. My brother was only 56 and the cause of death was heart failure.

Two years earlier, he had called me to say he was back in New York City. He arrived broke, with a teenage daughter and son, and a wife with a major disability. I hadn’t heard from him in roughly 12 years. He missed many things in those years including our mother’s funeral.

-- David S.

New York, New York

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