If you never had the pleasure of meeting or knowing Luke Bucklin, I’m sorry you didn’t get the chance. As many locals know Luke’s plane was found last night. There were no survivors.
If you had the pleasure of knowing or meeting Luke, I’m extra sorry for you because I know there’s a painful void in your life that will take a long time to heal. I didn’t know Luke very well but I was lucky enough to work for and with the company he founded, The Nerdery. I even had the opportunity to work with him on a very boring technical documentation project. A project so unsexy that he apologized for the dryness of the writing. “It’s documentation for nerds,” he said. “They don’t need poetry.”
If you are curious as to what type of person Luke was you need only look to The Nerdery. While he did not create that place alone, he was instrumental in shaping the place it has become.
When you think of nerds and a place called The Nerdery a lot of images probably come to mind. For most of us being a nerd was not a good thing. The word conjures up a lot of stereotypes badly-bespectacled, awkward, goofy, etc. I don’t need to list them for you. One of the things that never seems to come to mind is grace.
Grace is the only word I can think of to describe what has unfolded over this past week since Luke’s plane went missing. I never thought I would use the word to describe a company, an entity that exists to make money. But as I mentioned earlier, somehow Luke and his team have managed to balance the aspects needed to be a strong, successful company with being decent human beings intent on helping people.
It was edifying to see the Nerds turn to the web to express their hopes and fears. Reading their tweets and emails were at times hilarious and other times heartbreaking.
Unable to go out to Wyoming, though some of them wanted to help search, the Nerds did what they know so well — created things to help people connect. From #LukeComeHome that aggregated all the tweets about the missing plane (and now condolences) to the Thank You site which allowed people to send thanks to the Search & Rescue teams out looking for Luke and his boys, the Nerds turned their anxiety into something positive and helpful.
Who does that? It boggles my mind, and is such a testament to Luke and the company he helped create and the people they chose to work there. That, my darlings ones, is the very definition of grace. Grace in the face of something so tragic the mind can barely comprehend it. And yet . . . there’s just no way I can finish that sentence to adequately express not only my appreciation for, but my admiration of the Nerds and The Nerdery.
I’m so sorry for each of their broken hearts and for the pain they’re feeling. As they said on the blog, “We will sorely miss Luke as our leader. But well miss him far more as our friend. Everyone who knew Luke came away better for it.”
It’s a small comfort in the face of such overwhelming grief to know that Luke’s work and life will be admirably and beautifully commemorated every day in that place they call The Nerdery.