In life there are givers and there are takers.
Gary Piripavel certainly fit the mold of a giver. He'd willingly share his knowledge of bowling, lend an ear when a competitor wasn't bowling very well or just be a smiling beacon of joy. And in return, he never asked what was in it for him.
It's those characteristics that make the 64-year-old's death on Tuesday all the more difficult for the friends he leaves behind.
''He was an excellent friend,'' said Bethlehem Hall of Fame member Ed Pursel Jr. ''It was my pleasure to know him. He believed in himself and he would work with anybody to make the sport better.''
Piripavel was inducted into the Bethlehem Bowling Association's Hall of Fame in 1999. By then his list of individual accomplishments had been highlighted by winning the 1990 Lehigh Valley Masters tournament and a perfect game and an 803 at a PBA event in Syracuse. He would savor another Masters title in 2012 when he won the Senior Masters.
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One of his crowning achievements was his perfect game shot at USA CIO back in 2004, just before the closing of the 8-lane center.
''I'm so thrilled to get one at CIO,'' he said in an interview afterward. ''It's my first award score in Bethlehem and ranks up there with the one I had in Syracuse.''
Fellow Hall of Famer Ron Kaintz holds a ton of respect for Piripavel. It was Kaintz who allowed Piripavel to set up conditions at CIO in hopes of holding on to what he perceived as a loss of integrity in the sport.
''He was very honest with the bowlers,'' Kaintz said. ''He was as close to perfect as a guy could be. I can't say enough good things about Gary. He loved this game and he was so well respected.''
Scott Shiner was not only a teammate of Piripavel. He was also a friend. Shiner said he'd stop at the Drilling Station Pro Shop every Saturday and shoot the breeze about bowling, politics or even critiquing a show on TV.
''He will be missed not only in bowling, but he was a friend," Shiner said. "There's so many goods times I shared with Gary and I say you should live every day because you never know."
Shiner and Piripavel bowled together Fridays at Blue Valley. The week before Christmas, Piripavel showed up late and missed the first game. Shiner found out Piripavel's father, Basil, had passed away that day.
''He showed up and bowled the last three games as if nothing was wrong. He just kept it all inside and never said anything," Shiner said. "He never wanted it to be about him.''
Those sentiments were conveyed by Pursel, who said Piripavel was ''basically a private person.''
Piripavel's passing will leave a void in the area bowling scene and in the hearts of the people who knew him.
The memories that today make us sad will one day make us smile, because Gary would never knowingly want us to mourn for him. But we do.
Dave Goodman is a freelance writer who covers bowling. Find lehighvalleylive on Facebook.