By Dan Wolf
Four years ago, on July 28, 2017, I lost my dear friend, Jim Rubin, due to complications from surgery. At the time of his death, Jim and I had been friends for exactly 30 years. Jim was one of the sweetest people I have ever met, a genuine guy who you could rely on 100%. Jim did a lot to make this world a better place and was a loyal Lifeline supporter. So, in honor of Jim and our friendship, I decided to sponsor a borehole in his memory.
Following the completion of its construction in 2018, that borehole faded from my memory. But fond memories of Jim remain and, while on the way to our Apac office during my last trip to Uganda, I had Jim on my mind when we made an unexpected stop along the roadside in a community called “Akot A”. When I asked our country director, Timket Birkesaw, what was the reason, he said that he wanted me to see one of our boreholes. As we walked over to it, I stopped to read the signpost and saw this:
I was flabbergasted: I had just been thinking about Jim and there was his borehole – as if he were sending me a message from the other side! Wanting to get a sense of the impact it had had on the community, I asked a couple of the locals to show me the water source that folks had been drinking from prior to the installation of Jim’s borehole. They took me on a 20-minute walk through the bush and pointed me to this water hole:
My Ugandan guides then explained that over 100 families had been drinking from there. Just then, two little boys appeared by the hole and I could only imagine what their lives must have been like when that unprotected spring had been their sole water source. I wondered if they would even be alive today were it not for Jim and his legacy.
I only wish that Jim were here to see the difference his life had made on this underprivileged community. But at the same time, I can’t help thinking that on that hot summer day, just moments before reaching Akot A, Jim had made an appearance — from wherever he might be — to let me now that he already has.