He was tired.
You could see it in his face and the way he lay on the floor. The piles of pill bottles of varying contents and varying ages for various afflictions told a story he could not.
His life was all around him.
Tattered edges of sepia toned photographs showed a young child eager to live life. Grainy greens and yellows share the photo with hints of rust where he and his buddies fought a war far away. A posed portrait in an oversized neck tie and tuxedo with a beautiful young woman in white, her hairdo giving away their marriage was in the late 50s peaks from around the corner in the hallway.
My thoughts wandered to what he had seen over his years, what he had thought, why he had cried, what he laughed at and remembered above all things.
He was an avid reader, as told by the hundreds of books of varying topic, size and wear on enormous book shelves almost impossibly carried into this small apartment which is in none of the photos. Clearly this was not where he lived his life, but just where he kept his stuff.
A Navy man, according to the diploma on the wall and class photo adorned with a number of medals, none of them I recognized from all the fancy ceremonies on TV. A robe sits over the back of his desk chair, as if it lived there during the afternoons waiting for him to put it on to read.
On the desk is an envelope, sealed, with no writing on the outside to tell us where it came from.
The kitchen is immaculate, as is the bathroom and aside from books piled everywhere he kept this little slice of the world clean and organized.
That explains the towel.
For whatever reason, whether a memory from the sepia photographs, a ghost from the war or something more recent, he has taken his own life this morning, just after sunrise.
He lay the robe on the chair as he must have done ten thousand times, got dressed, had breakfast, did the dishes, pulled the revolver from wherever it was tucked away and lay out a large blanket on the floor.
Then, thinking not of himself but we who would find him, he rested down on a pillow, pulled a towel over his head and said goodbye.
The shot was heard by a neighbor who raced to the door to find it unlocked and ajar, we later arrived to confirm what he had already known.
It was over. He was done.