The Passing of a Social Media Friend

February 10, 2014

In the world of social media, the word “friend” gets used quite a bit. Perhaps overused. Many of us get onto Facebook and Twitter to promote ourselves, our businesses, our causes, our points of view. If we’re lucky, we run into like-minded individuals who entertain, enlighten and make us laugh.

In some cases, we get a chance to meet our social media friends and followers in person and get to know the human being behind that avatar. Otherwise, we get to know these virtual friends through their writing, the information they share and any social media interactions.

Last week, I learned that a Twitter connection (and familiar face), Judy Martin (@JudyMartin8) passed away. Shocking to me for many reasons, but one of the main ones is that we had just communicated on Twitter days before her passing.

On the evening of January 28, I sent out the following Tweet:

A short time later, I got a response:

As a Twitter follower of Judy Martin’s, I enjoyed the information she shared about work/life balance, mindfulness and leadership. After her response to my Tweet, I got to know her a little better by spending 10 or 15 minutes reading posts on her website and listening to part of a guided meditation she produced. The topics she explored resonated with me and I gained a deeper appreciation for her work.

Her passing makes me realize that every day, whether in face-to-face communication or on social media channels like Facebook and Twitter, we are leaving a legacy behind. There’s no telling how our stories, words, or a smile (even a virtual one) may help or touch another person at a time when it’s needed.

As I close this post, I realize it might be presumptuous of me to call her a friend – for I never had the opportunity to meet her in person. However, I do feel a deep sense of shock and loss at her passing. I’m sure this is an especially difficult time for those who were close to her. For an amazing tribute to Judy, please visit Lisa Petrilli’s The Sign of a True Leader: A Tribute to Judy Martin.

1 Lisa Petrilli February 10, 2014 at 7:42 am

Thank you for sharing my post, Tim. With warmest hugs, Lisa

2 Tim February 10, 2014 at 9:25 pm

Hi Lisa:

Thank you and thanks again for your tribute to Judy…she will be missed.

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