R.I.P. Harold Sedarbaum (1909-2007)

Eddie and I returned home from Florida yesterday.

Unfortunately, Eddie’s dad Harold ("Hesh" to his family and most friends) died last Saturday while we were there, under the exemplary, compassionate care of the staff at Hospice of Palm Beach County. His family was at the bedside as he left. The funeral was on Monday.

You could name a whole range of afflictions that had ganged up to make the man miserable during his final few months (though his reliable stoicism never failed him during the siege), but the basic cause of death was this: After nearly 98 years on this planet, Hesh’s body decided that enough was enough.

Below left: Hesh with Eddie in 1979, shortly after Eddie and I began our relationship. Below right: Hesh with Evelyn, his wife of 71 years, enjoying the cake commemorating his 95th birthday in 2004. The two of them were in North Adams at the time attending Eddie’s and my wedding.

Seven words that Hesh spoke to me 28 years ago still linger in my memory for the reassuring promise they conveyed that my welcome into the Sedarbaum family was going to be unconditional. It came at the end of Hesh and Ev’s first visit with Eddie’s new partner, the distinctly non-Jewish son of an Alabama Baptist minister. They had only just learned that Eddie and his wife of ten years had separated—and now this!

Hesh, Ev and I had spent an evening getting to know each other and, as Eddie and I approached the door to leave, I made a jocular reference to our differing religious heritages.

"You’re a good person," Hesh told me. "That’s what counts."

About Howard

I'm a cartoonist and writer, best known for my graphic novel, Stuck Rubber Baby, and my comic strip from the 1980s, Wendel.
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0 Responses to R.I.P. Harold Sedarbaum (1909-2007)

  1. Ed Mathews says:

    I really must check in more often, Howard. My sincerest condolences on the loss to you and Eddie.


  2. Blake Bell says:

    So sorry to hear about this, Eddie. Wow, 98 years and, more impressively, 71 years married to the same woman! Extraordinary! Sounds like a long, full life, Eddie.

    I’ll be thinking of you,

  3. My condolences on the loss of Eddie’s dad. He was clearly a treasure.