They were alive once and dwelt among us. Now they are gone. It’s an old story, maybe the oldest there is, and it’s been told many millions of times. The year now ending has been no exception. The departed in 2016 include writers, actors, musicians and other ‘celebrities’. We know who they were. Their departures, amply covered by the news media and have been marked, applauded or mourned, at length by the public.
The huge obituaries and the blanket media coverage belong primarily to those who became famous, or infamous, in life, or to those whose deaths were sufficiently lurid or shocking that they generated instant fame at the last minute. Some luminaries manage to achieve notoriety on both counts.
Other lives also ended in 2016. Just as precious, just as loved by those who loved them deeply, and who love them still. Unnoticed unknown. That’s death, of course, and everyone knows it. Most people lead more circumscribed lives, ending in private deaths that are felt directly by only a few. Yet these factors do not diminish the worth of those lives or the pain engendered by their end.
This time of year brings back thoughts of those who crossed my path and too soon passed on. Whose smile, wise words and affection live on in my memory. These few, and the many others may well be unsung, but that doesn’t mean they lived without song.