While so much of our world has to do with what goes on in Room 5439 at Mattel UCLA Children’s Hospital, we are aware that life, with all its twists and turns, goes on around us. The signficance of this became profoundly clear to us today as we learned that our dear Uncle Rixie passed away. He made it to 100 in November and then even through Christmas (photo below) and New Years, but peacefully left us while napping this afternoon.
Just this week, I took a look at the calendar to see if there would be a way I could steal away from the Rudy routine and pay a quick visit to Uncle Rixie in the Bay Area. I’m not wracked by feelings of guilt for not doing so, but just sadness over missing out on a chance to be with him (anyone who had the pleasure will know instantly what I’m talking about). I have been fortunate to know many remarkable people, but I’m not sure how many could realistically be described as possessing true greatness. I’m certain of at least one; who combined remarkable achievement, deep character and personal warmth over a lifetime to the benefit of thousands.
Over the last few years, Rixie maintained that he had lived long enough. With his passing, there isn’t the pathos of one being robbed of years yet to be lived. Yes, 100 years constitutes a “nice, full life”, but that doesn’t preclude us from longing for one day more. I was so hoping for a chance for he and Rudy to meet.
I miss you “Big Pardner”!