We lost one of our own today

Discussion in 'The Watering Hole' started by LW Bercini, Jul 10, 2019.

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  1. Jul 10, 2019 #31

    blackbrandt

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    That Darn College Student

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    I've talked with Gary on several occasions. He will be missed. :(
     
  2. Jul 10, 2019 #32

    JonathanOtt

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    :( He hooked me up with fin patterns for a 4" Alpha. I guess I'll build one as a tribute now. :)

    R.I.P. Gary. You will be missed.
     
  3. Jul 10, 2019 #33

    neil_w

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    Ouch, very sad news indeed. Gary certainly had a big (positive) influence on my own rocket activities. I regret that I never got a chance to meet him. Condolences to you LW and of course his family.

    Life is short, folks. :(
     
  4. Jul 10, 2019 #34

    aerostadt

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    Sorry to hear this. I saw his posts all the time. In particular I followed his posts/thread on whistler rockets. He will be missed.
     
  5. Jul 10, 2019 #35

    Rocketjunkie

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    WOW! I thought he was getting better. Many evenings in the motel shooting the bull. He will be missed.
     
  6. Jul 10, 2019 #36

    Steve Shannon

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    I’m sorry for your loss. Losing the last person you knew from your childhood is extremely difficult. Thanks for being a good friend to Gary. I hope we have a chance to meet someday.
     
  7. Jul 11, 2019 #37

    USAFmissileer

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    Gary always seemed genuinely positive and funny when I read his posts. Having not met him, I can only imagine how he was in person. I always thought his avatar a little strange but it probably fit him.

    Rest In Peace. Eternal rest be granted unto his soul.

    Mike
     
  8. Jul 11, 2019 #38

    T-Rex

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    Wow... Just goes to show that it can come at any time. He will be missed here for sure, and those who knew him will have a hollow spot inside.
    I was at Freedom Launch this year for a couple hours as a spectator, now I realize I should have been more social....

    Condolences to all who knew him on a personal level.
     
  9. Jul 11, 2019 #39

    LW Bercini

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    Yeah, the history behind that strange avatar is one of the pieces of my history I have lost. When Gary and I were in junior high school, we created a comic strip - simply for our own enjoyment and a way to share our quirky sense of humor. The characters were purposely constrained to being simple "stick figures". The main character was Arnuld. He was a "Have a Nice Day" face with legs. But Arnuld was created back in the 60s before that now-familiar smiley face was ever a thing.


    Off and on over the years, we'd have periods when we would share new strips. Eventually, technology allowed us to draw strips digitally, rather than sketching on notebook paper. About 8 or so years ago, Gary had a prolific period of creating new strips. At this same time he (and I) became "born again born again rocketeers" He drew versions of Arnuld with our faces on them. I never used "LW-Arnuld" on TRF, but Gary seemed to enjoy using "Gary-Arnuld" and would occasionally alter him to suit his mood.
     
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  10. Jul 11, 2019 #40

    MichaelRapp

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    Thank you for sharing that. I have always wondered about his quirky and unique avatar.

    I, regrettably, didn't make the connection between his name and his avatar/posts until a few days ago. I was looking back at some of his posts last night. As it turns out, Gary played a small but significant part in keeping me in the rocketry hobby. In late 2014 I severely injured myself with a x-acto knife working on a model rocket.

    Gary was the first to suggest that I abandon the x-acto knife and use a utility knife with snap-off blades. It would give me a better grip, wouldn't roll, and I could "install" a new blade without ever getting my fingers close to the sharp edge. I've been using such a knife ever since.

    It seems like a small, essentially obvious thing, but I was a beginner and for some reason thought that using x-acto #11 blade/knife was just the way one had to do things. So I am indebted to his memory for that.
     
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  11. Jul 11, 2019 #41

    BlowEmUpOrBlowEmOut

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    This is Bobby W.

    Johnny and I spoke and he wishes me to post on his behalf as well....

    Johnny always liked him and said he was a modeler who happened to fly his models. Rest in Peace friend.

    Johnny (written by Bobby)
     
  12. Jul 11, 2019 #42

    LW Bercini

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    Bobby,

    Actually, Johnny said that about both of us. At the time, we thought he was being condescending. Of course, we eventually realized otherwise.

    Would you like to keep the Decapitator?
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2019
  13. Jul 11, 2019 #43

    blackjack2564

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    LW my favorite rocket was the Helicopter one, ya know sometimes it would come down right side up blades on top,other times would come in upside down, blades on bottom. Worked either way....amazing..

    Always was a hoot either way....reminds of Gary actually...lol
    He would call me and I would always tell him to bring that one....I love to watch that thing fly.
    It amazed me his skills in upscaling rockets. That's my pick if it's still around. Do you know what motor that flew on, maybe it's in his log book.

    It really hit me yesterday how much I will miss him.:(
     
  14. Jul 11, 2019 #44

    davdue

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    Wow! I don't know how many times I have handed him is packet at AirFest over the years at registration.

    I remember seeing that rocket fly last year at AirFest.

    Prayers for his friends and family in this difficult time.
     
  15. Jul 11, 2019 #45

    LW Bercini

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    Gary never attended AirFest.
     
  16. Jul 11, 2019 #46

    jqavins

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    I only met Gary once. So far he's the only acquaintance from the forum I've gone on to meet IRL. He was a nifty guy who made really nifty rockets.
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2019
  17. Jul 12, 2019 #47

    SpaceDog

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    Gary contacted me after I made a post to the forum. We spoke on the phone. It turns out we lived fairly close to each other. We met for lunch an talked rockets. I shared a tent with him at a ROSCO launch in Camden, SC. He was a great guy & very generous with his knowledge. I feel privileged to have known him. RIP Gary.
     
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  18. Jul 12, 2019 #48

    K'Tesh

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    I'd love to see a gallery of his builds.
     
  19. Jul 12, 2019 #49

    Sandy H.

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    Wow. . . that's not cool. I'm sorry to hear that Gary passed - I enjoyed previous launches at Orangeburg and Camden with him. He came by our tent during the May launch, I believe and he seemed in difficult health, but positive. I assumed he went through something bad and was on the recovering side.

    I'll throw out a story. It could seem mixed at first, but I take away a positive from it. I hope you all do as well.

    I was an active member of a club in Charlotte and helped with contests. I decided to pay attention on rocket forums and if there was someone I noticed in the region, I'd reach out and invite them to a club launch, as I found it to be a great thing. I reached out to Gary, he came to a launch and he had a really bad time. . . seems that he felt the club was generally pretentious and not welcoming (paraphrasing). I followed up with him and apologized and he basically said it was an OK field and had a lot of variety of fliers, but it wasn't his cup of tea. I saw him a couple of times back at that field over the years and we spoke/hung out a bit, but in general I agree that something about that group didn't speak to him.

    Due to work obligations, I had to bail out of hobbies for a while and didn't make any launches for a few years. I finally got some personal time back and wanted to play with rockets again and due to weather headed down to Camden (ROSCO/ICBM) launches as the Midland club (ROCC) was having a bad time with crops and/or weather. Gary was there and right in his element.

    He recognized me (probably 2017 time frame), we talked and had a good time. He flew a bunch, I flew a bit and he gave me a nickname: Midland. From that point forward, every launch I went to in Camden, when I got there and he was in his tent or somewhere else, he'd say "Hey, Midland! How's it going?" I bet a dollar Gary didn't know/remember my name, but if he saw me he knew "Midland" and that was a good thing at that point.

    I truly hate that he didn't have a good time at the club in Midland when I invited him, but I was glad to see that he found a club that fit him well in Orangeburg/Camden. I was also glad that he'd call me "Midland" and it wasn't a negative thing. I think he remembered the bad experience he had with our club and remembered me for inviting him out, but didn't hold that against me.

    So, I'll remember Gary as a dynamic guy from a forum as well as a prolific LPR flier and occasional MPR flier who didn't gel with my home club, but welcomed me to his home club. I never expected that launch in May to be the last time I saw him.

    Godspeed Gary.

    Sandy.
     
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  20. Jul 12, 2019 #50

    davdue

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    Hmm I wonder who I am confusing him with. Either way I’m sorry for your loss. Sounds like he was a great guy and friend.
     
  21. Jul 12, 2019 #51

    LW Bercini

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    I heard all about his issues with ROCC. If you want to hear more, PM me.
     
  22. Jul 14, 2019 #52

    8thPaladin

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    I enjoyed his posts on the LOL pics. Seems he had a great sense of humor! Will miss his posts.
    My condolences.
     
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  23. Jul 14, 2019 #53

    Nytrunner

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    Absolutely. We must all post fruitcake memes in his honor this holiday season
     
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  24. Jul 14, 2019 #54

    Rktman

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    Shocked and saddened to learn of this. I never realized his condition was so serious, he never really let on how dire it was. My deepest sympathies to his family and friends. I am truly sorry for your loss LW, losing a lifelong friend is devastating. Though it brings scant comfort at this time, his legacy will live on in The Forum where he will be forever remembered for his contributions, sense of humor, and creativity.
     
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  25. Jul 14, 2019 #55

    USAFmissileer

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    Thanks for letting me know that story! Godspeed Gary!

    Mike
     
  26. Jul 17, 2019 #56

    LW Bercini

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    I missed something here. What is the significance of fruitcakes?
     
  27. Jul 17, 2019 #57

    neil_w

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  28. Jul 17, 2019 #58

    Nytrunner

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    In the LOL thread last holiday season, there was an abnormally long streak of fruitcake related jokes and memes. Gary became.....exercised
     
  29. Jul 17, 2019 #59

    LW Bercini

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