Tuesday, August 02, 2005

My father - Richard Mar - Rest in Peace

The 1st anniversary of my father’s death is approaching on August 13th. He would have turned 87 on Sept. 4th.

I have been spending time with my mother who has come out to SF from her home in Sacramento to visit with me and my twin brother. It is a relief to see her laughing again and able to cope with my father’s death.

One of my mentors, SF State organizer and rabble-rouser extraordinaire, Tim Sampson gave us all some useful advice on coping with the impending death of loved ones in 2001 before he quietly passed away on the morning of Christmas Eve 2001:

"To you who are about to die: Please take time to say goodbye... (I)t is so important and wonderfully useful to the person who is dying to initiate the goodbye saying. This opens up the space to recognize that death may be coming soon..."

Tim suggested what the visitor to a dying person might say, "I hope to be able to see you again soon. But just in case, I want to say goodbye and tell you how much you have meant to me even though..." He continued, "I am learning how to keep my emotional affairs in order, my bags packed, so to speak so when I die, I won’t regret not saying goodbye to the people I care for."

I unfortunately wasn’t able to say ‘goodbye’ to my father before he died on August 13th last year because he didn’t want me to know that he was dying. I wish my father had initiated the goodbye so that I could have hugged him one last time.

On the anniversary of his death and his life I just wanted to honor his memory. Goodbye dad. I miss your laugh, stupid jokes and the warmth and love you gave to all of us.

For more info on the life of organizer Tim Sampson - a founding staff member of the National Welfare Rights Organization and longtime professor of Social Work at SF State University
Our Union CFA's tribute to Tim

For more info on my dad - Richard Mar -
From the Sacramento Bee 2004

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

To Eric,
My deepest condolences on the passing of your father. I did not realize you had to go through this last year. I can imgagine not being able to say Good bye makes it even harder.
My mother's birthday is September 4th. Is it a trend (us progressives with Sep. 4 parents)?
With regards,