Sunday, March 17, 2013

My Week Went to Shit (In the Category of Be Where You Are.)

I had another post mostly written. I just needed to stick the ending. I like to stick endings the way gymnasts like to stick landings. All the perfect flips and jumps along that narrow, clearly defined path don't add up to squat if you don't stick the landing. Points are deducted. It is the same with prose.

I had planned to spend the remainder of the week and whatever it took of this weekend agonizing over the ending, but then my week went to shit.

You see, Daddy died, suddenly and unexpectedly. So this is the only written piece I have managed to complete this week. It will have to suffice.



Carl K. Hansen, of Chattanooga, Tennessee, formerly of Norfolk, Virginia, died peacefully on March 14, 2013. Carl was born on August 19, 1938 in Hackensack, New Jersey, and he graduated from Hackensack High School in 1956. He graduated from the United States Naval Academy in 1963 and then served in the United States Navy during the Viet Nam war. After leaving the service, Carl settled in Norfolk, Virginia and earned a Masters of Science in Mathematics from Old Dominion University. He was a math teacher until leaving to become a sales manager for the Virginia Pilot - Ledger Star where he worked until he retired.

Carl had a lifelong passion for singing and the theater. As a youngster he performed on Broadway in the children's chorus in the original production of The King and I. He carried this passion throughout his life, performing in community theaters and choirs wherever he lived. Children of all ages in Norfolk remember him as the Singing Santa for his performances as a dulcet-toned St. Nick. Carl also volunteered for numerous groups and organizations.  His passion for life and people could not be suppressed.  His giant deep voice, optimistic outlook and wickedly clever sense of humor will be greatly missed.

Carl was an active member of Grace Episcopal Church in Chattanooga. A memorial service will be held there in his honor on March 22, 2013 at 1:00 p.m. .

His parents, Elma and George Hansen of Hackensack, NJ, precede Carl in death. He is survived by two daughters and sons-in-law, Karen and John Shaffer of Norfolk, VA, and Kim and Greg Norris of Christiansburg, VA. In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Grace Episcopal Church in Chattanooga, Tennessee, or the Virginia Stage Company in Norfolk, Virginia.

My Dad as the Singing Santa. The beard and the belly are real.
This is my favorite picture of my family. 1967, in Rota, Spain, where I was born. I'm about 14 months old here, on the right, on Mom's lap.

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