Brian was not dead; There is no doubt whatever about that. Brian was very much alive, and he was the World's Greatest Husband to Lori.
When the two met in college, Lori told Brian that she had epilepsy and
what to do if she had a seizure. Three years later when Lori did
have a seizure, Brian not only remembered what first aid to administer,
but he also remembered to note what happened to Lori during the seizure
so she could tell her doctor for proper diagnosis and prognosis.
Although the medicine prescribed controlled the seizures, the pills
made Lori confused, and Brian patiently helped her adjust to her new
medication. He also drove her wherever she needed to go,
including to the department of motor vehicles to surrender her drivers
license, as the law required her to do after a seizure.
Lori resumed her undergraduate studies seven years after quitting
college because she was working on campus anyway and wanted to finish
her BA. Lori went to school part-time while working full-time
because their finances required it, and even paying part-time tuition
was difficult for their limited budget. Not only did Brian put up
with the added financial burden, he set up a computer for Lori in a
corner of their basement so she could do her homework in peace.
Sometimes he was lonely when she'd sequester herself for hours at a
time, but when she finally graduated after three years of very hard
work, Lori bought Brian a special certificate of gratitude to thank him
the most. When Lori's parents died twelve
days apart after long illnesses, Brian was there with hugs and
sympathy. He stood next to her and her older siblings during the
four-hour visitation and wake, then attended the double funeral the
next day. He held her as she cried, and listened as she told the
same stories over and over again about her parents, especially her
beloved Poppy for Lori was a Daddy's Girl.