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Forum member Heppy147 Mark Alan Hepton passed away
Just getting back on the forum after the Christmas break and come across this thread. This is very very sad news. RIP Mark and condolences to his friends and family
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Just saw this and it's sad to pass during the holidays for the family. My prayers with them all
Had a similar experience years ago when I was the chief editor of a video gaming website. Still to this day have never met any of the people I worked with back then in person, but was at the time frequently chatting in AIM with one of the lead content writers for the site. A year or so after the site closed, I'd remained friends with this fellow even after the site that had allowed us to meet was gone and then suddenly he stopped logging into AIM, no reply to e-mails, and he ceased uploading new videos to his once weekly updated YouTube channel. Over a year passed before one of his family members apparently gained access to his YouTube channel and updated the channel news to let everyone know that he had died of internal hemorrhaging a few hours after taking a fall on ice and not being aware he'd been injured. Was quite the blow as this fellow was only 20 (or 21? can't remember now), he'd just landed his dream teaching job at a overseas elementary school, was engaged to be married, and then he was suddenly dead from such a trivial incident that he didn't even know he was injured. Kinda throws a whole new perspective on how you view the people with whom you interact with on the internet.

To the casual person reading this on the forum at this very moment, my post is just a story made up of text on a screen, and likewise the first post in this topic about the news of the death of a fellow forum member who's screen name was, and still is even after death, Heppy147 also viewed with the about the same regard as a newspaper print article. And that's rather the way I suspect many view the written content here and elsewhere online, just written content. But all of the content comes from someone else, like you, me, and Heppy147, by inputting the words into a computing device and submitting it to the system so others can read it and interact with us. So even now, and for however long DartzNutz will continue to exist, the words posted by Mark Alan Hepton (aka Heppy147) will continue to remain archived on this forum as public record of his existence in this world we all live in.

Brave new world and all that jazz. When someone you know offline dies, you typically find out pretty quick via one of their family members or a mutual friend. You get to go to their funeral (usually), you have time to grieve over the loss of said individual and with others who also cared about that person, and ultimately you have some sense of closure to whatever relationship you had had with the deceased. But, when a friend you only know through the internet dies, it's a rather different affair. The odds you'll even learn they died are slim, and until you know for sure they died there's that dreadful period of self-questioning of if you've somehow offended the other person and that's why they aren't communicating back to you. And then when you've learned of their death there's a sickeningly grievous period of knowing you'll never get the chance to meet up with your friend offline ever, all the interesting conversations about things you'd wanted to have with that person will never transpire, and really the worst thing is that digital disconnect with reality. Which is to say, you share no connections with the offline friends nor family of that person meaning you're left to grieve over the loss of that friend all on your own, and usually a rather long time after they've already passed on.
That's very true Gamer_S, well explained. Sorry to hear of your friend too, way too young to die. Sad
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