My Uncle Don died this week. He’d been suffering from Alzheimer’s for several long difficult years. It was tremendously hard on his kids and his family to watch. Before he got sick, he was a brilliant and witty guy with a mind that never stopped working. He was always doodling funny cartoons, always first with a pun, always the first one to say the funny thing that you later wish you’d been smart enough to say. He was a brilliant prosecutor with the Alameda County DA’s office. He pioneered computer law before anyone really understood that it was going to be necessary. For him to get sick with Alzheimers was cruel and unfair, a tragedy for everyone who knew him.
He is the reason that I love good books. He is the reason why a bookstore is probably the world’s most dangerous place to me (followed closely by a yarn store, but that one is all me, folks.) Uncle Don was Children’s Fairyland, Asterix comics, OZ books for Christmas, and science fiction movies in the summertime. He was the force behind many of the flights of fancy that shaped my young mind. You never know what will be important to a child and he didn’t do all that to be important. He just did it because that’s who he was and he wanted to share all the wonder and magic that he had with the people around him.
He was secretly my favorite. My wicked Uncle Donald. I never got to tell him that. He got sick before I could. I really hope that he knows anyway.
My cousin wrote a really nice blog post.
He’s off on an adventure with Lion, Scarecrow and the Tin Man. No doubt, there will be lions, tigers and bears.