A long time before he took that drive down to the beach, we had stopped talking to each other.
These things happen between fathers and sons. It's not so unusual; in fact it's depressingly common.
Countless movies and books bang on about the tragedy of remote dads who never made the time to play football with little Johnny, never took him fishing, never gave him a hug when he was down.
Hell, watch any Disney movie and more than likely a remote or absent dad will be woven into the plot within the first ten minutes.
I wish I could tell you an original story.