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The Daily Goodbye

Patricia Sullivan

Anyone who's ever picked up a Fender Telecaster or Stratocaster has handled George Fullerton's work. Fender, the genius of electric guitar innovation, turned to Fullerton to make his instruments practical for mass production in their factory that opened in the late 1940s.

Riverboat gambling has overtaken my old hometown and although I'm not a champion of throwing one's money away like that, the money it raised in taxes has allowed the city to finally fix their streets. Bernard Goldstein opened one of the nation's first riverboat casinos, the Diamond Lady, in Bettendorf, Iowa, in April 1991 and has been called the "father of riverboat gambling." He, however, never gambled.

Mamie Nichols had philosophy that said doing something positive, like planting a garden in a vacant lot starts a wave of pride that washes over the entire community. "You gotta be strong to live in this world," she once said. "This world was not made for weak people."

Frederick Douglass Sengstacke had the right name for the job; he ran the Chicago Defender newspaper while it was a prominent and pre-eminent voice in African-American newspapering.

You have to figure that rock climber John Bachar died in a way that synched perfectly with his life as a no-ropes athlete, relying on his fingers and toes. He fell while climbing alone on Dike Wall outside Mammoth Lakes.

Would you have the nerve to drop in on a celebrity funeral or memorial service? Some do.

I saw this yesterday but didn't know whether to believe it: a most fascinating death notice (that is to say, a paid advertisement placed by the family). Now a Cleveland writer verifies the details of Nancy Lee Hixon's life.

Before I leave you today, could I suggest a look at the interesting array of obits we have at the Post today? We have Allen Klein, the Beatles and Stones manager; Molly Sugden, the British comic actress; Vassily Aksyonov, a Russian novelist; and my favorite, Philip Glaessner, a two-time detainee in WWII internments who became the POWs town crier.

By Patricia Sullivan  |  July 8, 2009; 8:17 AM ET
Categories:  Patricia Sullivan , The Daily Goodbye  
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