I got word last Thursday that a good friend of my father had passed.
He’s not been having a good week, my Da. He just got notice that there’s a cyst-like mass almost blocking the tube from his pancreas to his gut and that will need to be removed. No, thankfully it doesn’t look like the Big C, but it still needs to be removed. Anyway, he’s just got that news the same day his friend passed. God’s been busy.
Ivan was the kind of “generous” that was self-less, the only kind there should be. One of my first memories of Ivan was his utter removal of my father in helping prepare for his own 65th birthday. Da eventually wrestled control of the party back from him but you get the gist: Ivan was an excellent listener, a planner and a highly motivated man.
Thinking back, one of the last conversations I had with Ivan was the night before the Pride 2007 vote for Grand Marshal. Ivan called me and said that he put out as much word as he could without upsetting the board at Prime Timers. While I (shamefully) voiced my negativity at my father’s chance to win the position, Ivan never once said “Let’s pack it in” nor did he ever suggest that Dad would not win. His attitude never wavered. He showed up that night and offered his support just as promised.
Ivan’s funeral was the kind of funeral you secretly fantasize your own will be like: standing room only, slightly more laughter than tears, warm stories from friends, family and work colleagues. Even an ex-lover eulogizing their undying love for you, long after your break up with them. Judging by the over capacity room, Ivan was a man who once you knew, you had a devoted friend for life.
Even though the night before we celebrated my mother’s 75th birthday (expect a happier post later!), my thoughts have been about my Da this week.