I just spent the last half hour in a very weird state of confusion. Someone told my mom our old family friend died over a month ago, but we never knew it!
My dad checked all his emails to make sure no one ever told him and he just didn't clue in. I scoured the internet. No men with his last name even died in 2007. Dad called the man's wife, I worried it would be quite weird if he wasn't dead, and we all knew it would be a whole lot worse if he was but we never even sent a card.
It turns out they're in Texas, having a grand ol' time. My dad, voice cracking with emotion, asked to hear the man's voice, just to know for sure. He is indeed alive and well.
The "informant" got the man confused with a deceased Mr. Ward with the same first name.
Be careful who you declare dead.