Friend. Mentor. Colleague. Husband. Father. Parrothead. Lover of Hawaiian shirts, Crocs, and boats.

While not in any specific order, those are just some of the words that could describe Brian Moran. Brian passed away suddenly this past weekend. He touched many people in the SQL Server community over the years and this loss is a tremendous one. I do not know what happened nor does it matter; my condolences to his family and anyone whose life he touched.

My history with Brian goes back at least 20 years, if not more. I’m pretty sure I met him at one of the early PASS Summit events as I was becoming active in the community. He was just always around at that time. We got to know each other.

Over the years his involvement with PASS waned but his enthusiasm for SQL Server did not. He still participated in the community, albeit more locally to where he lived. I went down to his user group in I believe Reston, VA, to speak a few years back.

Brian played an instrumental part in me becoming the consultant and business owner I am today. He is also a reason I give back and mentor when I can. For that I cannot be more grateful. One example: when I was transitioning consulting jobs in the early 00s, Brian helped me out with some small engagements to tide me over. We worked together on and off.

Most importantly, he would always lend an ear or support if you needed it. He would make the time. Brian was there for me in a few situations over the years and I was happy to provide the same for him. He was never judgemental and even if you disagreed, Brian was the type of guy where you agreed to disagree and remained friends.

Brian was one of the friendliest people you could ever meet. He always cared about others and would help when and if he could which is one of the reasons this is so shocking; one of the good ones is gone.

While he and I lost touch the past couple of years, that did not make him any less of a friend. In the “should have” category, I was thinking of checking in on him recently to see what he was up to. He was on my mind.

Our time on this spinning blue ball is short. Make it count. Don’t leave important things unsaid. Let some stuff go and forgive if you can (not saying it’s always possible). Hug your loved ones a bit tighter. Be a mensch – Brian certainly was.

Rest in peace, Brian.

If you knew Brian, you have your own memories. Feel free to share down below.