Lew Berry - Gone but not forgotten online


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Lew Berry

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It was a blustery January day in 2018 when Lew Berry got down on one knee in the parking lot of the bowling alley in Fishers, Indiana, where he and Brianna Berry had gone on their first date a year and a half earlier. Brianna didn’t believe it was really happening at first. Since they’d moved in together a few months prior, Lew had had some fun building up to the big moment, getting down on one knee a few times just as a prank. What Brianna didn’t know was he’d already bought a ring and was just waiting for the perfect moment. And there, outside the bowling alley where they’d begun their love story, that moment finally came. “He said ... that first handshake changed his life, and he never knew he could be this happy,” Brianna, 31, told BuzzFeed News. “And he asked me to marry him.” Brianna and Lew met for the first time in August 2016 at that very same bowling alley. They’d first connected on the dating site Plenty of Fish, months before Brianna was planning to relocate south from northern Indiana, and went on their first date after she’d moved there. “We went bowling because he didn’t want to go to a movie, because he wanted to talk to me, and dinner was too formal,” she said. “It was just instant chemistry, instant connection. He was very easy to talk to and so funny — he could just make anyone laugh.” She added, “At the end of that date, he asked if he could kiss me. He was just a gentleman in every way. We both described it later as the best kiss we’ve ever had.” Their relationship sped forward after that. They cooked for each other and went on a date to the zoo and started spending more time together than they did apart. Eventually, they got a French bulldog named Rocco and bought a house together. And in November 2018, they married. “That still is the best day of my life, and it was his too,” she said. “You just look at our wedding pictures and you can just tell how much we love each other.” But Brianna can’t bear to look at the pictures now. Not since April 6, when Lew died of the coronavirus at age 37. Brianna has been left struggling to come to terms with the death of the man she was married to for less than two years, and she’s at a loss to understand how a virus that leaves many unscathed could kill the love of her life. “It’s still hard to believe sometimes — because it’s not like he was an old man,” she said. “It doesn’t make sense why some people die and some don’t.” “Why am I still here and he’s dead?” she asked. “Why am I a 31-year-old widow?” “I feel like I’ve been robbed of my life with him,” she said. “It’s like, why is it that other people just find their person and be happy, but mine is taken from me so soon? We never even really got to decide if we were going to have children or not.” Coupled with her grief, Brianna said she’s overcome with anger and frustration for those she sees as not taking the virus seriously enough, like people not properly social distancing and officials rushing to reopen businesses. “Don’t think that just because you’re young and healthy that you’re not going to get it,” she said. “It’s not just the elderly, and people need to take this seriously — it's not a joke.