Damien "Joey" Joseph Kam

Damien "Joey" Joseph Kam
February 11, 1965 - August 28, 2009

Honoring the great Memories...

Damien's Memorial Plaque was installed January 16, 2010. It is located in the Garden of Reflection Memorial Book. Inquire at the mortuary office if you are not sure of the location, and they will give you directions.

Pacific View Memorial Park
3500 Pacific View Drive,
Corona Del Mar, Ca 92625


One day we'll disappear together in a dream

However short or long our lives are going to be

I will live in you or you will live in me

Until we disappear together in a dream


Damien's Memorial Plaque

Damien's Memorial Plaque


If you would like to contribute to Colin's College Fund in Damien's Memory:

Send a check to:

College Savings Iowa

P.O. Box 55119

Boston, MA 02205-5119

Reference #450079529-01 on the check

Or if you use Online Bill Pay you can issue a check as referenced above.

For more information regarding this type of account please visit: https://collegesavingsiowa.s.upromise.com/

A special thanks to Judy, Cyndie's Cousin, for putting together Colin's college fund.

Monday, January 31, 2011


Another day, another letter that needs to be sent off with a copy of the death certificate and an affidavit that needs to be notarized. So I get in the car and head over to the UPS store on Bristol street. The death certificate, again and again ... it is required for just about everything. Having to look at it over and over can prove to be too much at times. To have to see the words ...

Driving back home the memories come crashing down on me like a waterfall. I am surrounded by all the places where our lives took place. I remember all the times we would go to South Coast Plaza to shop or just to walk around. Take the baby on the carousel. Eat at our favorite restaurants. Champagnes, Pacific Whey, Ruby's, Wahoos, Boudin. Spending time together. Talking about anything and everything. Going into labor at Macy's. Seeing shows at the OC Performing Arts Center. Hanging out with friends at Jerry's Deli. Laughing together. Watching the seasons come and go. I could pick up and leave this place, but honestly, I don't want to.

This happens to me whenever I have to deal with the "business of death". It always brings everything to the surface. And there is still so much that needs to be dealt with, but I can only handle it a little at a time. Piece by piece. I continue to take baby steps on my journey ...

The car ...

On September 22nd of last year, I said goodbye to Damien's car.  I could barely watch as the man pulled out of my friends' driveway, drove through the gates and out of sight.  A car I could not use, and had no reason to keep, became the possession of a young couple, just starting out together, and in need of a car to share to get them to and from work and school.  I had little to do with the actual showing, test drive, and sale of the car - I thankfully have great friends who happily took care of all of that for me.  Emotionally, it was just too much for me to take care of by myself.  Not to mention that Damien's car had a manual transmission, which I never learned to drive.  So all I had to do was show up and sign the pink slip over to the new owner, and the deal was done.  The man who bought the car had a nephew who was in great need of a reliable car for himself and his girlfriend.  So I really feel that the car went to the right person ... someone who needed it and wanted it, and who was not going to strip it for parts, etc.  I know this would have made Damien happy.  Anyone who knew him knew that he always wanted to do the right thing.  He cared about people, animals, and the world we live in, and always did his best to give when and where he could. 

A couple of weeks ago I was taking Colin for a walk in his stroller around the neighborhood.  It was getting dark, and we were at the intersection of Del Mar and Elden, fairly close to our house.  Out of the corner of my eye I saw a maroon-colored PT Cruiser that had just pulled up to the four-way stop.  The hubcaps and roof rack were all too familiar, as was the hum of the engine, so I waited at the corner for the car to drive away.  And sure enough ... the familiar license plate, committed to memory a long time ago ... it was Damien's car!  A sense of calm came over me, and seeing the car again actually brought a smile to my face.  I pointed it out to Colin and said "there goes Daddy's car!".  I knew that the new owners lived somewhere in the neighborhood, so I thought it might be likely that I'd see the car from time to time.  But I should mention that I was having a particularly rough and stressful day.  And I always notice that Damien finds a way to be near me on those bad days.  And that was him on that particular day.     

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Sick days ...

I woke up this morning not feeling so well ... not so much a flu, but headache and sinus problems, and lack of sleep.  I really just wanted to lay on the couch all day and mindlessly watch TV.  But this is not the case when you have a 2 year old running around, full of energy.  I laid on the couch while he watched Sesame Street, but then he really wanted to go outside and play with his new basketball hoop and ball.  So I had to give in, but then I later convinced him that we needed to go inside and do puzzles.  Nap time couldn't come soon enough for me, so I could lay on the couch some more. 

Long after nap was over, I looked up at the clock ... it was almost 6pm and I was exhausted ... and for one half of a second, I caught myself thinking about Damien coming home from work soon.  He always came home around 6.  And he always helped me with everything, especially when I wasn't feeling well.  Sometimes these little "memories" just smack me in the face.  On days like this, it's difficult to accept that he's gone.  I miss him on so many levels. 

And, as always, the house just seems too quiet.   I miss the sounds of him playing with Colin, or giving him a bath, and both of them laughing.  Damien had a special bond with Colin.  Sometimes I do think about how unfair it is that such a wonderful, loving Daddy had to be taken away from his son.  I try not to dwell on it though.  Staying stuck in the negative for too long isn't going to do us any good.  Instead, I try to remind Colin everyday about his Daddy, and the things they used to do, and what a great Daddy he was. 

I really should go lay down now and get some sleep.

After all, tomorrow is another day.    

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

New Year

And it's been a long December and there's reason to believe
Maybe this year will be better than the last
I can't remember all the times I tried to tell my myself
To hold on to these moments as they pass
~Counting Crows~

2011 has arrived, and I'm feeling at least a little bit of motivation now that the holidays are over.  I really feel like I have to change some things this year.  I can't keep drifting through the days.  Here are a few things I am determined to get done in the coming year.  Call them resolutions if you want.  I prefer to think of it as my To-do List. 

1.  Lose weight.  I know, this is everyone's New Years Resolution.  But I'm determined to do this.  I need to get healthy, and have more energy to keep up with Colin.  I am a stress/emotional eater of sweets and other bad things ... I have to change that.  I need to lose 30 lbs to get back to my normal healthy weight.  I don't think that's asking a lot of myself, is it?  I know I can get there. 

2.  Get the house and myself organized again.  I used to be totally organized - everything had its place, and I knew where everything was.  Then we had a baby, and all hell broke loose ;o)  Then Damien got sick ... I just couldn't keep up.  And it's been an uphill battle ever since.  You should see my garage (some of you have!) ... it's scary, and completely overwhelming to me.  There's so much stuff I want/need to get rid of.  But its a huge task, at least in my eyes.  I don't like feeling this out-of-control.  I have to change this.

3.  Get the finances in order.  The savings goes quickly when you're not looking (or paying attention).  There's a lot I need to cut down on.  Just getting back to the basics (do I really need 200 TV channels?).  I still haven't turned off Damien's cell phone.  I need to do that (it would save me money).  It's just a really difficult thing to do.  Each time I get rid of/sell/turn off something of his, it's like another little piece of him is going away.  And that scares me.  It feels like he's slowly fading away from me.  The thought of turning off his phone depresses me, which leads me to go eat a bag of cookies (see To-do List #1).  I need to sell some stuff and find some affordable health insurance for me and the little man (the COBRA just went up, and it's outrageous!). 

4.  Keeping Daddy's memories alive for Colin.  I have some ideas for this one, stay tuned ...

Just a few things to keep me busy and keep my mind from going to the sad places.  Hello 2011.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year

Goodbye 2010.  I can't say that I'm sad to see you go.  You've been the hardest year of my life.  I need a fresh start.  A new set of numbers.  A different perspective.

Hello 2011.  I hope you bring better things.  More energy.  Strength.  Rest.  Time to catch my breath.  Recouping and reorganizing.  Re-thinking things.  Just a little bit of Peace.

Happy New Year!  What now?