Bill Foster was an indomitable spirit. I believe everyone loved him because he always had a smile on his face and he calmly refused to die. He unreasonably wouldn’t die when every indicator of “death is near” came to him over and over in different guises. He held on to life even though it offered him limited mobility and comfort. No one beats the system, and my friend, Bill Foster died March 20th. This picture is from his 75th birthday party that I blogged last year. You can meet Bill there at this address:
I, like most people I know, dislike funerals. I am so grateful that celebrations of life are more common than funerals and his family’s request for a celebration of life, was to wear colorful, fun clothes.
His grandson, Cameron, managed to fit into his grandfather’s some other era golf clothes with the pants tucked into the socks. His son Steve, wore his father’s polyester suit of orange checks and tried to fill his father’s shoes. He did a good job, of it , too.
And no one ever expected Bill to do things like anybody else. He wanted to be a married man again. He had asked Linda Strangio to marry him. She finally gave in to that request and they were married 15 days before he died. He smiled all through the ceremony. And he died a happy man.
I met Bill Foster because of my friend Bill Foster (above). I went to an Arts Council summer music event in Arnold about five years ago, and was looking for a place to put my blanket on the grass in the park. My friend Barbara invited me to join them. I said, thanks but I was waiting for my friend Bill Foster. She said, “Oh, I know him, he used to be my insurance agent in Dublin.” I said, no, my friend Bill Foster is a retired cop. That happened three times that day and I decided, I’ve gotta meet this guy. Bill Foster the cop got me in touch with Bill Foster the insurance agent, and I joined a number of his friends who helped bandage his legs. (He needed bandages changed three times a day at that point.)
Bill and his wife, June were at the celebration of life as well. Bill (cop) always called Bill (agent), sonny, because he is slightly older than he was. They lived in the same town, golfed on the same course, were constantly getting each others mail, or the wrong chart at a doctor’s appointment, and phone messages meant for the “other” Bill Foster. The opportunities for humor were many, and Bill exploited them at the celebration of life. I am lucky to have had two great friends named Bill Foster. One here and one I’ll never forget.