Adalene’s Priorities

This past weekend I drove down to Danville to spend time with Mother, Tom, Carol, Jeff, and Marcy.  I had a great time.  Most importantly, I caught up with Mother and the photo collection she’s going through.  My Grandmother passed away last year and as part of that transition, passed along her possessions to her children.  My Mother’s portion of the memorabilia includes photos, postcards, and letters between my Grandmother and grandfather while they were courting.

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It’s a treasure trove of memories.  My Grandmother managed to hang on to large volumes of photos while moving to progressively smaller spaces in Toledo Ohio, Portland Oregon and Danville Kentucky.  In Portland and Danville she lived in very small spaces. She chose to retain this volume of memories because it was a priority. The material filled three moderate sized bins which Mother has now pared down to one large and one small bin.

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Matt’s Leg

2012/01/02 Update:  A follow-up visit with Dr. Fowler at Cardinal Group’s Hilliard Office on Thursday 12/22 went well.  The flexibility in his knee was considered good.  The swelling in his ankle suggests that he’s not been diligent enough with the physical therapy exercises for that joint.  X-Rays of his leg were taken and (along with the x-rays of his leg taken on 12/9) I’ve posted them in the Flickr photo set for the event.

In response to several requests, I’ve put this summary together describing the circumstances around Matt’s broken leg.  A few people didn’t care for the pictures on the original Facebook post so I’ve not included any direct photos here – but be advised that all the links to Flickr come with an advisory.

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Camry Again

Rear Quarter Panel
The result of a teenager while driving his family’s pickup truck not noticing that the stop light at the intersection had turned red.

I posted earlier that we had to accept the salvage value for the Camry after someone pulled in front of Becky as she drove east on Main Street towards downtown.  I had forgotten about our first incident with the car.  Barely a month after purchasing (lease) of the vehicle I was hit from behind by a teen driver at  Patterson and Stewart in Dayton.  I had taken some employees out for a Christmas luncheon.  While waiting for the light to change to green, the driver of a small pickup hit us from behind.  He did not realize until too late that the stoplight was not in fact green.  The medics took one passenger to the hospital as a precaution, but generally, we all did ok.  The police officer that took my statement speculated that the car was likely totaled.  He was wrong.  Cheney’s body shop did a great job restoring the trunk, back and rear quarter panel of the vehicle.   I believe it was significant surgery, but fortunately, the small pickup jumped over the frame and simply buckled the side panels.

Becky found our insurance photo recently and I thought it àpropos to bookend this event with my earlier (but later in time) post.

Matt Graduates from OSU

Matt Just Before Receiving Diploma

Becky and I are really proud of the fact that Matt successfully graduated from the Ohio State University. Even better, he graduated early, participating in the Winter Ceremony. So much has happened this spring that I’ve been unable to post the news until now – two short weeks before the Spring Graduation ceremony.

People tend to think that OSU, being one of the largest Universities in the world would have an impersonal graduation ceremony. Getting thousands of graduates across a stage and receiving a diploma is an incredible feat. I’m not certain what happens in the larger spring ceremony – but the winter ceremony was very nice. All of the speakers kept their comments brief and appropriate. Donna James, managing director of Lardon and Associates, nicely delivered the commencement address. The staff is organized and friendly. Most impressively, the University President, Doctor Gee, shakes every graduate’s hand as they leave the stage. It’s an impressive accomplishment and he seems to genuinely enjoy the effort.

In the weeks leading up to the event, it was clear that Matt felt the ceremony was going to be tedious. Getting a gown and cap was definitely a chore. But his Mother prevailed on him and let him know that most grads participated in the graduation ceremony for their family and friends and not for themselves. We do appreciate him sitting through the ceremony, and truth be told I think he did enjoy the event.

Link to Flickr Photo Set

Marking My Brother’s Passing

On the one year anniversary of my brother Mark’s death, I’ve written a few notes regarding last year’s events.

Mark.jpg

One year ago my father called me up and told me that my brother would shortly be dead.  He and Carole were driving up to Cleveland to be with Mark before he passed.  I told him I would come up the following day.  The next morning Lisa called with the news that Mark was dead.  The week that followed was challenging for all of us.

The previous week I had been in Cleveland.  I had until that point been in denial about Mark’s health.  I had seen other people overcome cancer and fully expected that he would do the same.  Until a week before his death, Mark had appeared in good (not great) health.  He carried himself like many other cancer patients, and I expected that he eventually would overcome the affliction.

Unfortunately, that did not happen.  When the second treatment protocol failed, it failed in a significant and sudden fashion.  I remember in my last visit with Mark, my last words to him (and his to me) were “I wish I could do more for you” to which he replied, “You are doing what you can.”  True, but unfortunately that’s way too little and way too late.  I regret I wasn’t a better brother and there wasn’t more I could do.

Funerals draw people together.  I enjoyed seeing my family.  I am blessed to have the best family on the face of the earth.  I am not someone who indulges in hyperbole, but I don’t have a problem saying that at all.  The memorial service, the celebration at the church were all memories I will cherish.  Our family came together and celebrated Mark and his life, and I’m grateful to all of them.

Post Note:  It’s worth noting that my Grandmother also passed away this year.  I’ve purposely used this picture to also honor her passing.  I’ll write up something separately for the passing of a classy lady.  [Update 4/8/12 – Adalene’s Priorities]

Here is the formal Cleveland Plain Dealer obituary:

MARK J. PAPPAS, SR.,age 45, Beloved husband of Lisa (nee Moyer); loving father of Melanie, Joe and Mark Jr.; loving stepfather of James and Stephanie; dearest son of Marjorie Pappas and John E. and Carole E. Pappas; loving son-in-law of Gerald and Marilyn Moyer; dearest brother of David (Becky); loving stepbrother of Michael Oglesbee (Barbara) and Eric Oglesbee (Davida); dear brother-in-law of Debbie Granger (Duane), Robin Deyoung (Steve), Randy Moyer (Carrie) and Jerry Moyer (Debbie); dear uncle of Matt, Michelle, Alexandra, Ian, Cuilen and Mirai. All Funeral Services will be held Saturday, October 24, 10:00 AM at St. Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church, 22909 Center Ridge Rd. Reverend Father James Dukas officiating. Family will receive friends at the CATAVOLOS FUNERAL HOME located inside CRACIUN BERRY FUNERAL HOME, 23040 CENTER RIDGE RD. FRIDAY 2-4 AND 7-9 PM. TRISAGION SERVICE 7:30 PM FRIDAY. Interment Elmhurst Park Cemetery, Avon, OH. ARRANGEMENTS BY CATAVOLOS FUNERAL HOME 216-226-2200 CLEVELAND • WESTLAKE • FAIRLAWN

Elmhurst Park Cemetery, Avon, Ohio

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2010 TSF Themes

After considerable delay, angst and gnashing of teeth – I am extremely pleased to present the theme and logo for the 2010 Troy Strawberry Festival.  I’ve made no secret of my struggles to come up with a broadly appealing theme.  I have been working closely with Angie Evers of Forever Design and she has come up with this beautiful design.

I have several people to thank in addition to Angie for the design.  My wife Becky has helped kick around a variety of ideas and all of you have her to thank for my not bringing forward something really horrific.  Jim Stubbs, while he should have been paying attention to my board presentation, sketched the original version of the strawberry which I have used as a mental model in my discussions with Angie.

Becky and I both are chided for being professional volunteers.  For a variety of reasons, we both have invested ourselves in community efforts.  I have of course been involved more on the periphery of the Strawberry Festival and the Festival of Nations.  We both have been active in the local soccer organizations.  And of course, most any activity in which our kids were interested we both either led or participated as parent volunteers.

Combining these two passions is an ideal scenario.

2010 TSF General Chairman

I am both honored and privileged to serve as the 2010 General Chairman for the Troy Strawberry Festival. It’s a huge job, but definitely a rewarding one. I’ve watched my lovely wife fill the role for a year now and hope that I can match her effort. I look forward to working with a great set of committee chairs (60+ – wow!!).