(From John McKenzie)
Okay, Man of Steel, I have rambled enough. You were an enigma, a hyperbole,
a paramount, a huge tribute to life itself of which you were bigger than, a
gentle Man with tattooed hands, a motorcycle rider who wrote beautiful songs
in the key of life, which was usually limited to one, or, at most, two
chords, in the fashion of Lou Reed and Neil Young. You married a beautiful
woman and have a beautiful daughter. I will find that picture someday of
Tiana when she was two, with those blazing eyes and perfect countenance and
send it to you.
I Love You, Tom.
Your Pal, Johnnie Angel
(From Shaun Reynolds)
I just wanted to pass along a couple of favorite Thurber memories for you fellow e-wakers. After Mike(Farnam) and I moved back to the Bend in the mid 70's, Tom and his then family were living on a rented farm in North Liberty about 20 miles outside of town. Not that he was tilling the land or anything, he just liked the life of the country squire. And he had a barn. It was big enough that Tom had mounted a basketball hoop on one wall and we would cop a buzz and play ball in the dimly lit barn until we had to quit because we were all wheezing too badly from the opaque cloud of dust we had kicked up. But the most memorable event there was a New Years party he threw ('76?,77?). We all drank the kool-aid and sang songs and opened presents, one of which turned to be a game of Rock'em Sock'em Robots (which of course was for one of the kids). So we immediately proceeded to play it for the next two and a half hours, until a particularly crushing left actually decapitated one of the contestants. I have never laughed so hard and so long before or since. And it wasn't just the kool-aid. Sensei Tom had shown me the truly zen possibilities of martial arts I had never imagined until then. I'm sure all of us who knew him are nodding in recognition of similar intangibles we got from him, but you just can't explain him to someone who didn't…
Tom Thurber's daughter Tianna and his friend Timmy Swearingen sent these notes:
Hello everyone. I just wanted to let all of you know that my Dad passed yesterday around 1:15 p.m. He died peacefully in his sleep. The cause is unknown. I went to visit him on Thursday and it was very sad. Physically he seemed fine. He was very dillusional and restless. It's a relief to know that he is finally at peace. What a great complicated man. There will be no funeral. I donated his body to science. (Duke University Medical Center) When I receive his ashes I will think long and hard where to scatter them. He loved so many different places. Hopefully he can help others with his condition. I think he would have been okay with this. With Love To All, Tiana Thurber
tiana thurber [email@example.com]
From Timmy, Jan 13, 2007 — 3:05pm (EST):
Tiana called. Tom died today. I wish him peace. he was amazing and
difficult and he will always be remembered and his absence felt and his
voice and laugh. I have such longing to hear him again but he's gone.Tom
lived a remarkable vital life touching many with his complexity,
sincerity and search for love. it was a blessing to have known him. he
was a friend and brother may his soul shine on and on and on….. Timmy
Now for some good news, having played a team with players of a different species. It was bad enough that the quarterback is bigger than Alan Page, but when the offensive tackle was bigger at birth than any of our linebackers is now that is a problem.
Anyway, those of us who attended Notre Dame before it was infiltrated with women and lost only five games in four years are planning on continuing our annual night out on Rush street Friday, Jan 12. We will be meeting at Butch McGuire's at 6 pm. Attire is whatever one wants. The attorneys from downtown dress accordingly–grey suit, bland tie. I will not wear a suit- to avoid bleeding all over it.
See you then.
richard mcpartlin [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Report of the event: Rick's encouragement, with the support of Dave Kabat, short-hitter Bryan Dunigan and other correspondents produced a good turnout, including Rick's son Brian, Matt Walsh's sons, Roger Guerin's son Brian, and Rick's lifelong friend, Harvard grad Paul McCarthy. Tom Weyer said that Rocky Bleier, a hit at one of the pep rallies, has agreed to think about helping Tom put some life into the president's remarks at the next reunion. We also heard from Tom that the recent gubernatorial election turned on Joe Kernan's reluctance to curry favor from southern voters with a personal doling out of capital punishment on the lawn of the governor's residence. In a quiet conference, Bob Ptak, Roger Guerin, and Matt Walsh made plans for Saturday Mass attendance while their wives were away for the weekend. If Tom Gibbs arrived home reeking of beer, it was only because a clumsy waiter splashed a drink all over him. Bryan Dunigan's early departure from the gathering prompted some muttering: Mary was in town and, following the inclination so few of us were able to act upon years ago, Brian had a date on a Friday night – no time for the boys' night out.
The New York Times January 7, 2007 article recommended by Jim O'Rourke, “Mr. Hall Goes to Congress,” is worth reading. Larry Forness, Tom Condon and I met John about the time we all met at the beginning of our freshman year, when Tom, Larry and I lived in Zahm Hall as overflow freshmen waiting for incidents (such as the Michigan Band incident) that would open spaces in freshman quarters. Fifteen or sixteen years old at the time, John had the bearing and confidence of someone older than we – and Larry was coming from the Marines.
Mike Hampsey has a new CD of his music at a cost of $20 for classmates. Details from Hamps and former Hill Street roommate John Walsh are:
P.O. Box 1433
Tom Cuggino (email@example.com) had good holiday news: