EP's James P. McGinnis ("Jim"): 1953-2013

It is with profound sadness that the management and staff of Exceptional Parent Magazine (EP) announce the passing of Jim McGinnis, Executive Vice President Operations and Chief Financial Officer. Jim was a man of great character and integrity who approached his duties with passion, dedication and commitment. He had a work ethic second to none. He was, by any yardstick, someone to look up to and someone fiercely loyal to the principles upon which our company was founded.

But, mostly, Jim was my friend. I miss him already and cannot fathom why God decided He needed to take him back so soon. But, as we know, God's plans for all of us remain a mystery. So we must take comfort in the knowledge that He simply needed Jim at His side.

Suffice to say that the Jim McGinnis I knew never dwelled on the negative and always strived to find a solution to a problem, regardless of how difficult it was. He was a 'can do' individual and I admired that trait in him. His positive attitude and calm demeanor provided a roadmap for others to follow. We will always remember that Jim's favorite parting line following any get-together was, simply, "Be good."

I could write volumes about the good times Jim and I shared. They far outweighed the bad times, and their memories are indelibly etched in my mind. We shared many experiences and laughed often despite the difficult economic times we were going through. Through it all, I never had to worry about my back because I knew Jim had it covered.

All of us have experienced the loss of a loved one and those close to us. It never gets easier for the memories never fade. Yet, time does provide some healing. The most important thing to remember is that while Jim has left us, we must not regard this as good-bye. I've always wondered: where is the "good" in good-bye? Of course we will all miss Jim. But missing someone does get easier each passing day because even though it is one day further from the time you last saw each other, it is also one day closer to the next time you will! We must believe that. So, for the McGinnis family, including his two grandchildren he couldn't stop talking about, here is a brief poem that I hope helps in this time of grieving:

Good-byes are not forever;
Good-byes are not the end.
They simply mean "I'll miss you"
Until we meet again.
(Author unknown)

Safe travels, my friend...
--Joseph M. Valenzano, Jr., President & CEO/062513

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