“Go Hard or Go Home”
By
Kevin J. Lenhard
Notre Dame ’89
 
Norman, Norman, please say it ain’t so
It was not you we thought would be first to go
So full of energy, so full of glow
Norman, Norman, please say it ain’t so
 
We first met when you were a student in Stanford Hall
Lugging your books, bat, mitt, and ball
Back then your boys were John, Roger, and Dave
Bunking together in a loft that was all the rave
 
Going to class, playing cards, and drinking cheap beer
You attacked your days without a trace of fear
Hours at the “brare” studying biology and “orgo”
Relief at Bridget’s while cursing your Bravos
 
You boasted of your days at the prep school Choate
Going to class dawning a tie and a coat
But we saw you happiest at Notre Dame
Wearing many a fashion faux pas without any shame
 
Studying and toiling, the goal was medical school
To doubt you would make it marked the sign of a fool
Playing catcher for the Irish and crushing the MCATs
Constantly adding to your collection of fitted baseball hats
 
Our final year at ND was truly so swell
Road trips, apartment living, and a bathroom from hell
Rejoice! Rejoice! A National Championship was won
Twelve guys in a motor home to “fun in the sun”
 
Off to Tampa to join the Water Mocs
Studying in the lab while sporting some smocks
Taking your Boards under the gaze of a proctor
You made it, you made it, we now called you “Doctor”
 
Traveling about following the Grateful Dead
Always giving 110% before retiring to bed
Running marathons or skiing out West
Gambling in Vegas, you did it the best
 
Delivering new life and working with Dad
Your life was a dream and you were always so glad
Courting and marrying a fellow Domer named Karen
Thank the Lord she left your closets barren
 
Traveling to Cabo with your beautiful bride
Relaxing just a little with your wife at your side
She transformed you into “GQ” from a loveable slob
We always wondered, Don, did you ever hold a real job?
 
Coming home to O-town and settling in Winter Park
Setting up a practice and playing golf like The Shark
Along came Conor, Liam, and Nicholas, now they were your boys
You filled your home with lots of love and a few little toys
 
On the road to Atlanta you stopped to serve others
True to your physician’s oath, you saw them all as brothers
No one is surprised that you stopped to render care
You would have done it anytime, anywhere
 
Gazing upon you now is Our Lady of the Lake
Shedding her Grace to those at your wake
We wish we could see you one more time near the Golden Dome
But we are at peace because, Donnie, you went hard,
 and now you’ve gone home