I was so saddened today to hear of the passing of Karen Meyer. Karen was just a delightful, inspirational person. When it came to her beloved home, Marlin, she dedicated herself to her community and just rolled up her shirtsleeves and dove into problem-solving every way she knew how. Everyone who saw the film remarked on how inspirational Karen was. I am so glad to have met her and to have had an opportunity to work with her.
I was equally saddened to hear of the passing of David Tinsley in late September. David was a one-of-a-kind; a man who truly exemplified what it means to be a Texan. He was an avid steward of the land, a great humanitarian and wonderfully funny, spirited and generous. Even though I hadn’t seen David in a couple of years, I missed his presence on the planet instantly.
We lost a number of participants in the Tomlinson Hill documentary over the last four years; significant losses, all. The film was dedicated to the memories of Pinky Taylor Price and Ray Charles Lang, both of whom passed shortly before the film was released. About a year later, we also heard that Bess Sebesta had passed on. She was well into her 90′s when we interviewed her. Her personality and memories were sharp and clear and provided a critical perspective on her experience teaching in the Marlin school system.
More than ever, these losses have underscored the need and importance of capturing critical oral histories before they are lost forever.
Chris and I are grateful to have had some beautiful moments with all of these lovely people. Don’t hesitate to ask your loved ones for their stories, before they are gone. You’ll be glad you did.