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Fate's Labyrinth News and Updates
Roy E. Disney - (January 10, 1930 - December 16, 2009)
"When your values are clear to you, making decisions becomes easier." Roy Disney. Roy Disney, nephew of Walt Disney, and CEO of The Walt Disney Company for many years passed away today, at the age of 79, after losing a battle with cancer.
Our Prayers and Condolances to the Families of Fort Hood
Growing up in Austin, Texas, and traveling the road between Austin and cities to the north like Waco or Killeen, I often found myself in the company of the wonderful men and women of Fort Hood. To me, these are not "unknown faces", they are neighbors. To many they are fathers, mothers, lovers, children. Today a manman murdered many and wounded many others at the base. My prayers are with all of the Fort Hood community - Sky Link to the News Story: Gunman Kills 12, Injures 30 at Fort Hood Please pray for these families tonight. It may be one of the largest bases in the nation, but it has the heart of a small town where everyone knows everyone.
Patrick Swayze Aug 18, 1952 - Sept 14, 2009
Patrick Swayze lost his battle with pancreatic cancer on Monday at the age of 57. Born in Houston, Texas in 1952, Patrick Swayze was an American song-writer, dancer, and actor who rose to fame after playing a lead role in "Dirty Dancing," and later in "Ghost." In 1991 he was voted the sexiest man alive, and in 2008 he was diagnosed with state IV pancreatic cancer. Swayze was 18 years old when he met the love of his life, who was a student at his mother's dance studio. In 1975 he married her. Our condolances go out to his wife and other loved ones. Patrick Swayze, and his wife Lisa Nieme dancing together at the 1994 World Music Awards. ">
I was at home that day, talking on the phone to a dear friend who told me, "I need to hit the road. I have a meeting at the bank, and I am going to drop Kathy and her friend off at school on the way into town. I'm doing lunch with Danny. Any messages for him or Mickey?" Danny and Mickey (Michelle), are friends from Brooklyn, New York. Danny worked in World Trade Center. Ken banked there. Off the phone, and not eager to get to my chores, I turned on "The Today Show," and my computer. As I watched Katie Couric and Matt Lauer laughing, I saw a plan fly into the building shown behind them. To this day I wonder if it was a window or a projection screen. I think a window, but I'll never know. As they were trying to get accurate reports onto the news, my phone rang. It was Ken again. I could hear screaming in the background, hysterical. His message was short and sweet. "I'm safe. Don't worry. Got to get Kathy's friend to her mother." I later learned that the screaming was Kathy's friend. Her father worked the WTC, and she saw the same news show I saw, and she knew her father's office was in the section of the WTC that was hit. Like the rest of the world I watched the news unfold with utter horror griping me. I made a few calls to try to locate various friends who were scattered around the areas hit. Amazing how small the world becomes with the Internet, and how huge it seems in a disaster. I prayed and prayed, and when the second tower came down, I mourned because I was positive Danny, an internet friend of almost 5 years, was gone. As it turned out, he made it out. When the first tower was hit, his boss had cleared the office, and just about the time they reached the ground level, an all clear was sounded, but the elevators were still off line. Danny's boss had grabbed him and said there was no sense walking up those stairs, and suggested they grab coffee down the street while they waited for the elevators to come back on. Danny said he was just a few feet away from the building when it started coming down. He, and thousands of other New Yorkers, walked home over the Brooklyn Bridge, in some scene he says reminded him of a bad sci-film film. His cell phone was useless, and by the time he finally walked in the door, Mickey was a hysterical basket case, certain he'd died at ground zero. I counted myself lucky. I had not lost any of the three friends I was positive had been in that building. Then stories started to come in. Michael posted on a forum I ran, asking for prayers. The first friend I ever made on line, Michael had grown up in Brooklyn, and wore his accent proudly. He was an accountant, but his firm had moved him to Houston a few years ago. I had forgotten that he and his wife still had family there, until I saw his request. Michael's family were fire fighters. His brother was missing. Then Barbara called. She was crying hysterically, but she was alive to cry. Barb lived in Boston. She's missed her flight that day. Her coworkers had not. Marie was next. A nurse who worked at the Pentagon, Marie was off that day, but her brother, also in medical service, was there. I didn't know what to do, but I felt I had to do something. I went to work, and there I learned of a student from New York who was stranded in Texas. Her father was one of the thousands who worked in the WTC, her mother was not answering the phone. the student had flown to Texas, and now all planes, nation wide, were grounded. I watched as professors and vice presidents and secretarys and provosts scrambled to find a way to get her home. In the end professors packed vans with food and counselors and emergency workers and drove her home. Then another call. Did I remember Barbara? She had been at the party at Jane's? She was on the plane. Years went by. The damage count continued to grow, not in deaths, but in lost lives none the less. Danny changed jobs numerous times after September 11th, torn between his beloved New York and a growing paranoia that the government had somehow done this. Mickey had a total nervous breakdown, and was hospitalized for awhile, then Danny moved them all to North Carolina. Hundreds of students transferred out of the University, no longer willing to live so far away from home. Friends and relatives who had spent their entire lives doing emergency rescue went to New York, and came back changed. They drank, they cried. They quit their jobs. Its eight years now. Mickey and Danny are in California now. They miss New York, but they don't feel like a target is painted on their backs. Ken tells me that Kathy's friend is a college graduate, and a wife and a mother. She's moved on. The friends and relatives have gone back into the rescue operations and back to the Hasmat teams. Some have become officers in the military. Life goes on. But what happened that day --- will never be forgotten.
Mourning the Loss of Marvel Comics
Disney Aquires Marvel Some of you may remember the old WebChat Broadcasting System. A first-of-its-kind collection of web-based chat rooms that freed chatters from the /commands of IRC, allowed graphics, and served as a wonderful home-away-from-home for millions of internet users. Well, WBS sold to Info, and Nia's survived, along with most of the other WBS rooms. Then Disney bought WBS. The "hands off" promise that Disney made to WBS was not so much hands "off" as it was "in the mouse's hands". Control that mods used to have was yanked out of their hands, rules came down from above, and the demand was, "We won't force you, but if you don't comply, we'll close you." They closed WBS. So, it is with tears of sorrow that I read they have aquired Marvel with the same promises they once made to WBS.
Senator Edward "Ted" Kennedy - 1932 - 2009
Known as the Lion of the Senate, Edward Kennedy was the second most senior Senator in the United States Senate. A man that seemed to draw reactions of passionate extremes from adoration to rage, it is rare to find anyone who denies the Senator's influence on the world. Legislation authored by the Senator includes: The Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965 The National Cancer Act of 1971 The Anti Apartheid Act of 1986 The Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 The Ryan White AIDS Care Act The Civil Rights Act of 1991 The Mental Health Parity Act of 1996 The 2007 State Children's Health Insurance Program The No Child Left Behind Act
John Hughes 02-18-50 - 08-06-09 "The Man Who Wrote For Geeks"
The world has lost one of the most talented men of this age. "The flag's at half-mast," wrote film-maker Kevin Smith on Twitter. "John Hughes, the man who spoke for geeks way before anyone else did." If you don't know the name, you probably know the work. He wrote jokes for Rodney Dangerfield and Joan Rivers. He was a writer on the staff of National Lampoon Magazine. His screen plays include Class Reunion, National Lampoons Vacation, and Home Alone 2, Lost in New York He directed Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink, Weird Science, Ferris Bueller's Day Off, Planes, Trains and Automobiles, Uncle Buck, Home Alone, and Curly Sue. His production credits include most of the movies he directed, along with National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, Dennis the Menance, Miracle on 34th Street - 1994, 101 Dalmatians, Home Alone 3, She's Having a Baby, Only the Lonely, and The Great Outdoors. Our thoughts and prayers with his family and friends.
Ricardo Montalban 11/25/1920-01/14/2009
Any fan of Star Trek, Fantasy Island or the Spykid Movies will remember Ricardo Montalban. For those who do not recognize the name, Montalban played Khan in the original Star Trek series and in the movie, "Wrath of Khan." He went on to play Mr. Roarke of Fantasy Island. He will be missed. In an age when white men often played people of every ethnicity, and an age when it was almost impossible for a member of the Hispanic or Latino community to find work in Hollywood, Montalban became a superstar.
Memorial-Tisha Ann Stewart
I've used Fate's page to memorialize some famous people over the years, and tonight, I'm using it to say goodbye to someone I love/d very much because memorials shouldn't be reserved for the rich and famous. Tisha Stewart was born to my cousin just a few weeks after my father died. Somehow, holding a new baby, seeing the miracle of a new life, made saying goodbye to someone I loved a tiny bit easier that summer, and Tisha's mother was happy to let me babysit as often as I wanted to. Like many women in our family, Tisha was smart and headstrong. She understood people, and that started at a very young age. One of my fondest memories is of Tish, trying to sneak out of the house, via the garage, with her big wheel and a serious case of the flue. When I caught her and told her she had to come back in the house, she insisted in that way that only a 5 year old can insist that fresh air was good for her "foo" and she needed to be outside so she could get better. On another visit, still at age 5, she had declared coats unnecessary, and when I told her she had to put one on she put her hands on her hip and announced, "I am not wearing that thing." I told her that she had to put on the coat or go inside and she told me, very matter of factly, "No. I don't." I threatened to spank her, and she wisely studied me, and then said, "No you won't. You don't believe in spanking and you love me." She was right, on both counts. When her mother remarried someone told her and her younger sister to give their "new Daddy" a hug. Her sister screwed up her face and announced, "He is NOT my Daddy. I HAVE a Daddy." Tisha quickly ran to her side, whispered, "Its okay. We know who Daddy is, and he'll figure it out." As it turned out, both girls were blessed to be loved, very much, by both of their "Daddy" and their "Step-Dad" and they loved them both back. She was a hero. Not only in my eyes, but in the eyes of many others. Like her father and her brother, she worked for the hazmat teams that were based in Houston, Texas, and when Katrina hit, she went to New Orleans to help clean up after the hurricane. She volunteered at the Tiger Sanctuary, and was known to spend many weekends hand feeding baby tigers, romping with tiger cubs, and brushing down larger tigers. She was into rock music, basketball, volleyball and life. Most of all, life. The love of her life was her daughter, born to her when she herself was little more than a child. A carbon copy of herself as a child. Being a single mother wasn't easy, but no one can remember Tisha ever complaining for a moment. The cancer was a shock to all of us. It doesn't happen to young people. It doesn't happen to single mothers of small children. Tisha was determined to beat it, because she was determined not to let her precious daughter face life without a mother. Other women would have given up early into the cancer fight when the going got very rough, and it got very rough very quickly. They removed intestines, they tried radiation, they tried chemotherapy. She had to use catheters and colostomy bags, but come Halloween when her daughter wanted her to be Madonna with her, she became Madonna. When all of us were supposed to cheering her up, she was emailing jokes and spirit lifting messages to us. As she wasted away to nothing more than a skeleton with a paperthin layer of skin stretched over her, she made jokes about her crash diet. She fought to be a good mother to the very end of her life. When she slipped into a coma and her daughter thought she was gone, she rallied at the sound of her daughter's tears, somehow finding the strength to say, "Love you," and "Mama's here." She died in her mother's arms Friday, November 21st, surrounded by people who have loved her since that summer long ago, and who will love her long after the ceremonies to say goodbye are done. We miss you already, Tish, but don't worry about Rhylee hon. We'll love her the way we always loved you.
Randy Pausch, whose moving "Last Lecture" touched so many lives passed away Friday, July 25, 2008.
To see Professor Pausch's moving "Last Lecture" go to the front page blog.
Michael Turner (April 21, 1971 - June 27, 2008)
Michael Turner, President of Aspen Comics, and one of the most respected artists in the world of Comics passed away of cancer at Santa Monica Hospital in California. Turner's comic art was loved by millions and included cover work for both DC and Marvel. The cover shown below was drawn for Marvel Comic's release of Wolverine, Origins #1, but Turner was best known for his work on Witchblade. He drew for Superman/Batman, Fathom, Soulfire and many others, and was president of Aspen Comics. Tuner sufferend from chondrosarcoma, and waged a long battle against the disease.
Our hearts go out to Michael Turner's loved ones, friends and fans. RIP.
George Carlin (May 12, 1937- June 22, 2008)
In memory of one the greatest comedians to have shared his genius with the world."I think it's the duty of the comedian to find out where the line is drawn and cross it deliberately." "Think of how stupid the average person is, and realize half of them are stupider than that." (Please look for George Carlin Videos on Youtube.) "Honesty may be the best policy, but it's important to remember that apparently, by eliminiation, dishonesty is the second-best policy." "Some national parks have long waiting lists for camping reservations. When you have to wait a year to sleep next to a tree, something is wrong." "It is never just a game when you're winning." "There is no present. There is only the immediate future and the recent past." "Weather forecast for tonight: Dark. Continued dark overnight, with widely scattered light by morning." "The very existence of flamethrowers proves that some time, somewhere, someone said to themselves, 'You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I'm just not close enough to get the job done.'" RIP George Carlin
Tribute to Tim Russert: RIP May 7, 1950 - June 13, 2008
I don't usually do this, but there are not that many people in this world I really admire. Today an iconic figure passed away. Tim Russert was the host of NBC's Meet the Press. He was the Washington Bureau Chief for NBC News. He was a correspondent for the Today Show He won almost every honor that journalism can give the world today. He educated the world regarding how the Electoral College of the United States works, and coined the phrase "Red State" and "Blue State" He was one of the last old fashioned journalists around.
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