Sand in an hourglass: Childhood pals rekindle friendship after 43 years – Salisbury Post

Sand in an hourglass: childhood friends rekindle friendship after 43 years

Posted at 12:10 a.m. on Tuesday, November 15, 2022

Each day seems to go faster than the last, and if a person is not careful, a few years can turn into decades.

For three childhood friends from Kannapolis, a reunion in Salisbury last week was the first time since 1979 that they had all been together. They are determined not to waste any more time.

Tim Bost, Rick Tucker and Phil Collins grew up together in Kannapolis. They attended North Kannapolis Baptist Church and forged a close friendship in a traveling choir.

“We’ve been everywhere from Canada to Florida to the Midwest,” Tucker said.

The last time the three were together was for Collins’ wedding in November 1979. On Thursday, they joined the Smoke Pit for a long-awaited feast, where they reminisced about those trips across the country , from flat tires to short lived novels.

“The three of us were very close, but we all got married and went our own way,” Bost said. “I ended up working on a few associate degrees, then a bachelor’s degree at Pfieffer University before getting a master’s in public administration at UNC-Greensboro. I finished that course, got married, had two kids, then went to work for the Salisbury Police Department and the Rowan County Sheriff’s Office.

Bost was the only one left in Rowan County, the other two having gone to different areas.

Tucker dated Gardner-Webb, where he was Collins’ roommate for a few years. He eventually went to seminary and was an associate minister for years.

After earning a Bachelor of Commerce, he worked for CitiBank for a while and as a project manager for AETNA Insurance. In recent years, health complications made work impossible for him, and he quit completely in 2017.

Collins worked in advertising for several years, but earned a master’s degree in secondary education and began teaching in 1994. He was absent from work when his wife fell ill.

While the time apart has been filled with full-time jobs, family affairs, and personal triumphs, a shift in mindset has come with age.

“As you get older, you become more sentimental,” Bost said. “It’s just natural. I had actually released a few photo albums, and I have a ton of photo albums, but I hadn’t come across this one in maybe 10 years. I saw these guys in there and I thought, “I’d do anything to see them, but I don’t even know where they are.”

Although he hadn’t seen Collins in years, Bost still knew how to get in touch with him.

“For years after we last saw each other, Phil and I were sending a Christmas card back and forth,” Bost said. “We had a thing where we would include a silver dollar in the card and send it with the card, so we traded that coin every year. For some reason we have stopped sending the cards. When I contacted Phil he said he had found the piece so I am expecting it in my Christmas card this year.

Tucker laments how they broke up and what it cost them personally.

“We really missed our friendship,” Tucker said. “We were good friends and we shared a lot of experiences together. Sure, we were young, but as we lived our lives, I missed that friendship.

Collins said reconnecting with old friends was special, even if it took longer than expected.

“It took us too long to reconnect, but I’m glad we did,” Collins said. He added that he intended not to let another 43 years pass without seeing his old friends again.

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