One of the most amazing things about the video game community is the friendships and relationships that emerge out of the shared experience. This has been true since the days of playing Atari with friends on the living room floor through the LAN parties of the early PC gaming movement. The opportunity to game with more people, and people at greater distances, has grown exponentially in the last decade and competitive and cooperative online games, like Destiny, have continued to bring gamers closer together, even if they're not in the same room anymore.
Unfortunately, sometimes those friendships come to an end far too soon. Large-scale shooters and MMOs, like Destiny, give players a chance to work together closely and consistently by forming clans or guilds. Joshua R. Stokell passed away on June 8 and is missed and remembered by his Destiny clanmates, the Dads of Destiny.
Joshua's friends at Dads of Destiny were heartbroken by the passing of their 36-year old friend, but took the time to come together and create a tribute to their friend. The tribute video is heart-wrenching and reminds us that despite all the negativity associated with online gaming, some incredibly meaningful and important friendships are also born out of this hobby of ours.
Joshua was a victim of cystic fibrosis and passed away while awaiting a transplant. He dedicated his studies at UNC-Charlotte to researching possible cures to the genetic disorder.
The Dads of Destiny took to Reddit earlier this month to request help from the Destiny community in recording clips for a montage-style tribute to TheSquashPhD (Joshua's gamertag). The community rallied behind the clan and delivered enough footage for the D0D to put together the above memorial for Joshua.
"You have helped make a beautiful farewell to our fallen brother. This is the most amazing community. So from all of us at DoD Legion to all of you who commented and contributed, you have our most heartfelt thanks."
More than 250 people have replied to the original Reddit post offering their condolences and providing clips for the video. Although the video is a small memorial to Joshua, it is heart-warming to see the community band together and take a moment to pay tribute to a player who clearly loved spending time in the game with his friends.
Rest in peace, Joshua.
Destiny is available now for the PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.