Día de los Muertos

All Souls Day

Día de los Muertos is Part Two of 70 who have passed, which began yesterday.

Please come to hear a special choir concert on November 3 at 6 p.m. at First Presbyterian Church, 362 State Street, Albany, NY. The choir will sing Morten Lauridsen’s Lux Aeterna, a 30-minute work with orchestra.

Margaret Lia: The den mother of my Cub Scout troop and mom of one of my best friends in elementary school and junior high.

Darby Penney: She wanted to save the world. Very occasionally, I tried to help.

Bonnie Deschane: She would clean our house some weekends. She was less good at the cleaning thing and better at the friend thing.

Robert Yates: My mother’s youngest first cousin; he was only seven years older than I was. Though we saw him only twice a year when I was growing up – I was in Binghamton, he was in Queens, NYC – he was the closest thing to an older sibling I had.

Paul Peca: Our sixth-grade teacher let us, even encouraged us to disagree with him. He supported Barry Goldwater for President and agreed with the US dropping the bomb on Hiroshima.

Comic books

Phil Seuling: Seagate was FantaCo’s primary comic book distributor, and he and Jonni Levas were Seagate. I went to a couple of his lavish parties in Brooklyn. Phil lived large.

Freda Gardner: I didn’t know that the nice older lady at church was a legend in the Presbyterian Church USA. Her wise counsel was invaluable when she and I were on pastor Glenn’s congregational team to aid him in his doctoral quest.

Tim Ryan-Pepper: Music was our bond

Sinon O’Neil: Every time I saw him, he always cheered us with questions about current events joyfully. And he was a crafty card player.

Helen Foley: The Binghamton Central High School public speaking and drama teacher and Rod Serling’s mentor was also involved with theater with my father.

Stan Moore: When I was church shopping in 1982, he gave the sermon at Trinity UMC on June 13 that got me to come back. But I avoided his vicelike handshake.

Paul Crowder: The choir director when I joined the Trinity UMC choir after not singing for over a decade.

Samuel Walker: When items were discovered in the possession of my father’s mother’s father that a good Christian man presumably should not own, it rocked my mother’s theological underpinning.

Charlie Kite: a First Pres church member and a physician.  He was particularly effusive when he knew he was dying,

Donna George: She tried to do good things but often wasn’t taken seriously. Beleaguered would be the term I’d used. We bonded over this.

Margaret Hannay was the epitome of hospitality and grace. She was also brilliant.

A force

Ken Screven: A great local journalist and a fellow Times Union blogger for a time.

Lillian Johnson: Before my time there, she was the associate pastor at Trinity UMC. We fought the good fight, getting the then-current pastor to change his ways.

Fred Goodall: the youth choir director at Trinity AME Zion for many years.

Arnold Berman: my mother’s Charlotte’s brother, genealogist of the Berman/Barosin tribe.

Ida Berman: Charlotte’s sister, who used to take me to New York City art galleries and museums. She was a fine photographer.

Alice Schrade: an older member of First Pres. We adored each other. We’d have great philosophical conversations about race, justice, and other topics.

Arlene Mahigian: When I joined the Trinity UMC choir, she adopted me. She would take my robe home to wash, though I didn’t ask her. She had a tremendous soprano voice.

Keith Barber: We kept crossing paths on CDTA buses for which he was a ride evaluator, in Bible study, where he was the purveyor of a specific text, and as a raconteur.

Richard Powell: my father-in-law. I loved going to minor league baseball games with him. His love for jazz and country music I didn’t appreciate until after he died when I inherited part of his CD collection.

Robert Pennock: a baritone in the Trinity UMC choir, he was wise regarding Methodist polity.


Marcheta Hamlin: the organist at Trinity AME Zion who tried to teach me piano. My wife met her and commented on how warm and wonderful she was.

Agatha Green: My paternal grandmother died when i was 11. I’ve since learned so much about her courage and character.

Fran Allee: She was an educator and cook at Trinity UMC. Several of us traveled to her cottage, about an hour away each summer.

Mike Attwell: My racquetball competitor long before I joined him in the First Pres choir.

Adenia Yates: my mother’s maternal aunt, a buffer between me and her sister. She and I watched JEOPARDY, played cards and SCRABBLE.

Pat Wilson: A friend of my father, with whom I talked theology extensively.

Gertrude Williams: My maternal grandmother was a superstitious and controlling person who attempted to pass it along to her grandchildren; my sister and Leslie bought into it, but baby sister Marcia rightly ignored her.

Charlotte Yates: the mother of four of my mother’s first cousins. She had a strong sense of politics and art.

Jim Kalas: I knew from both work and Trinity UMC.

McKinley Green: Thanks to Pop, I got on TV a lot as a kid.


Raoul Vezina: Ever since I became the de facto keeper of the FantaCo flame, Raou never goes away, even though he died in 1983.

Gladys Crowder: We were in two choirs together at Trinity UMC and First Pres.

Trudy Green: Increasingly, I suspect there was more there than my mom showed. She’s mentioned a lot on February 2 (the anniversary of her death), November 17 (her birthday), Mother’s Day.

Norman Nissen: racquetball partner, book suggestion-maker,  best man at my last wedding.

Les Green: My dad was a really complicated guy. He shows up on Father’s Day, August 10 (the anniversary of his death), and September 25 (the day before his birthday).

I can quickly think of a dozen more, but I will let it be.

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