Tom Hunter left all of us a legacy of celebration, music, compassion and giving to our communities. Throughout his lifetime, Tom worked with people of all ages and backgrounds to teach new ways of learning and living. We all are committed to "keeping it going" by remembering his smile and his music and his voice.
There was a tremendous outpouring of support for the Hunters during this transition, and the family is deeply grateful.
On September 2, 2008, a letter from the National Prion Disease Pathology Research Center confirmed that Tom had what's called 'sporadic CJD' (sCJD). His was an extremely rare type of sCJD that one in 4.5 million people are diagnosed with annually. We're very grateful that he did not have the inherited form, but it's critically important that a cure for all forms of CJD (caused by scrapy proteins in the brain which can take up to 40 years to manifest and kill their victims) are found. All forms of CJD are fatal.
The most accurate and up-to-date site for learning about CJD and supporting efforts to find a cure is http://www.cjdfoundation.org/ .
To live on this earth
you must be able
to do three things:
To love what is mortal;
To hold it
against your bones knowing
your own life depends on it;
And when the time comes to let it go,
to let it go.
Whatcom Educational Credit Union
PO Box 9750
Bellingham, WA 98227
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PHOTOS - NOW ON A NEW PAGE
Pictures of Tom, Family and Friends
with love from Gege Manolis
COMMENTS and HOW TO HELP
There are many ways to help. Please click on www.tomhuntersupport.blogspot.com under Music, Meals, Flowers, Yard Work, Farm Work below or look for the How to Help section opposite the daily comments on the right side of the blog towards the bottom.
Music, meals, flowers, yard work & farm work
Jeanne Herrick has put many photos from the blog into a beautiful slide show. Click below to watch
Words from Tom's Dad
Somebody noticed what you did today
Somebody noticed little things along the way
How you watched how you listened to what children do and say;
Somebody noticed what you've done alway
'Tis grace has brought us safe thus far,
And grace will lead us home.
And the Angels took care of him.
The Lord bless and keep you. The Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious unto you. The Lord lift up his countenance upon you, and give you, your family, the city of Bellingham, and the world, peace-- both now and forevermore. Amen
May 20, 2008
Here I sit, feeling my feet on the floor
An image of grounding you’ve used lots before
Trying to make sense of this surreal, difficult time
While loving where I came from with infinite pride
It’s been amazing how many lines from your songs
Have been lights in the darkness when it all feels wrong
Have comforted, questioned, been profound and fun
Your capacity for humanity is second to none
This world is a better place because of who you are
And that’s known widely – near and far
In music, education, and matters of the heart
You’ve bettered lives right from the start
I’m so proud of you, of where I’ve come from
You’re a huge part of me and have taught me a ton
About being human, love, laughter, and tears
And how to keep going despite life’s fears
Please don’t worry about the rest of us
We’ll take care of each other and will always feel your touch
Your laughter, music, compassion, and voice
Will always be with us in the midst of life’s noise
So here I sit, feeling my feet on the floor
With love and gratitude deep down in my core
I’m so grateful for the time we have had
You’ll always be my mentor, my best friend, my dad.
i’ve always loved your laugh lines,
the way you smile ear to ear
and you always have this easy way
of crushing any fears.
we’ve shared so much so far in life
and i’m so proud and glad
that i can say with confidence
i have the very best dad.
from raspberries to hasty moves
and the cutting edge again?!
to times when you have comforted me
over troubles with my friends.
you know how to relieve the weird feelings
when things don’t feel quite right
you let me put them in your hands
and throw them into the night.
we’ve shared trees against the sky
and books, poems, songs and walks
you taught me respect by looking again
and i’ve always loved our talks.
from dream stories to lake padden eagles
and coloring outside the lines
i can say with ease and confidence
you have the most lovely mind.
i remember all those wakeful nights
and running down the hall
you and mom sang lullabies
and sound asleep i’d fall.
i’m your goofball now—
i’ll always be whether we’re near or far
i’ll hold you close in who i am
no matter where we are.
i know it’s getting harder
to take in this fantastic world
just know i love you—i always will—
as daddy’s little girl.
To My Old Brown Earth by Pete Seeger
To my old brown Earth
And to my old blue sky
I'll now give these last few molecules of I
And you who sing
And you who stand near by
I do charge you not to cry
Guard well our human chain
Watch well you keep it strong
As long as sun will shine
And this our home
Keep pure and sweet and green
For now I'm yours
And you are also mine
with thanks to Cori Dusmann
"I want my music to be grounded in the realities of what kids and teachers know. I want it to 'ring true; as it helps people laugh, cry, remember, celebrate, and learn."
— Tom Hunter
Quoted from Tom's introduction to his book of essays : "Visits to the Heart of Education: Remembering What's Important" (available from Song Growing Company - see link below)
What if it's too far?
What if we can't find our way from right here where we are?
What if it doesn't matter
that we can't find our star?
What if God comes anyway
right here where we are?"
and frightened. Don't open the door to the study
and begin reading. Take down a musical instrument.
Let the beauty we love be what we do.
There are hundreds of ways to kneel and kiss the ground.
Rumi, the Sufi Poet
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