Silicon Valley’s “Departed”

Out of the blue, I heard from an old friend in the Valley startup scene here via email last week. We hadn’t talked in a while. It was a casual email from him, a short note, sort of like, “Hey, how’s it going…”

I wrote back, saying, “Same ol’, same ‘ol” and said we should get together for a beer. We had a little ritual to have beers and watch the end of the baseball season. We’re both big baseball fans. He played in college. Good kid, really nice.  We like the post-season and dissecting strategy. My wife even remarked that when he’d come over to watch, she thought he was such a humble guy.

He wrote back to my note. Turns out he’s back home in the midwest with his family, thousands of miles away. He had to shut down his startup, his dream. After years of trying to gain lift with the product he designed, he had to turn the engine off. I never got to say goodbye, he just left. I can imagine it’s a very tough spot to be in.

His email continued. He’s very optimistic about the next thing. He said he’s hoping to get back to California to dirty his hands on the next idea. He loved this place and said he was lucky to be here, just to participate in some way, on this fun stage.

I hope he does.