I said goodbye to someone I adored this weekend. My friend Todd Hauge’s heart was so packed with love for his family, friends and this world that it simply couldn’t hold anymore. He was much too young to leave us. A friend who spoke at his funeral talked about the measure of completeness for a man’s life being how much love, laughter and good works he spread, not how long he lived. Indeed by this measure, Todd was justified in leaving.

We met almost two decades ago when he came in our radio studio with the group Angelic. He had a percussion practice pad and his drumsticks. He wasn’t sure why they even wanted him along, but he provided rhythmic accompaniment as requested. Because he was the only guy with a gaggle of girls, my partner Ben dubbed him the “Boy Toy”. Todd mumbled something about that being “the kind of nickname that stuck”, and seemed less than thrilled. But stick it did and in the intervening years he would often refer to himself as the “artist formerly known as Boy Toy.

Facebook photo of Teeeko!

Todd had numerous nicknames, Teeeko, Sticks and in recent years, “Toby”, for reasons only three people on earth understood. Yes, one of the million and one inside jokes he had with every single friend he possessed. And there are so many.

Todd was a devoted husband and father, a savvy businessman, an amazing musician, a philanthropist and a friend to practically anyone who had the luck to cross paths with him.

Facebook photo of Todd and Danelle Hauge

Our friendship was disorderly, but deep. We shared an affinity for music, droll humor, gut busting laughter, good beer, wacky emails, obscure after-school specials that were televised in the 1970s and- - the drums. We also shared a hatred of ignorance, mean people and our inability to control the workings of our own brains. We quite often referred to each other as the “bi-polar poster boy and the depression queen”.

I knew he was only a call or an email away, always. And now, until I hopefully trip over his foot in heaven, he is not--and I could not loathe it more.