Archive for the ‘ Sad Things ’ Category
One Facebook post said it simply. “The world lost a class act today.”
No, she wasn’t talking about Robin Williams or Lauren Bacall, all of whom died this week, she was talking about Billy.
Or Bill, as he came to be called in adulthood by his friends.
William A. Steinmetz, III died Friday morning, leaving behind a Mother, three sisters, two brothers, countless nieces and nephews, many friends, and thousands of former students who can write a little bit better just because they had met him.
Billy and I were childhood friends. Our families’ lives were intertwined through church, school, work, friendship, and the special connection that the tiny town of Germantown, Ohio affords.
A school teacher for many, many years, his
Facebook page is filled with tributes from former students who’s lives he impacted greatly.
One mother of former students said, “I want You to know that when my sons were students of Fairview in Dayton, Billy was their English teacher…they loved him. It seems that everyone loved him”
A former student summed it UP this way, “I couldn’t be more upset right now to find out that my creative writing teacher, one of the closest teachers to me, and the guy that touched my hair and said, “OUCH” every time he saw me, has passed away. He is someone who has shaped me and who has a hand in who I am today. Since my 8th grade year at Stiver’s he has been a mentor to me. He knew I wasn’t fond of writing stories, so he let me bring my guitar in and sing a song instead. I promise I’ll see you again one day and I’ll let you touch my hair. I hope that one day I can be a fraction of how awesome you were to everyone. I’ll never forget how great you were and how great you still are in spirit. I know you are still with me critiquing everything I’m writing right now. Rest in peace <3″
He was unique, an individual, talented in many ways: art, music, writing, and more.
And smart, very, very smart.
We didn’t stay in touch much after high school, he went on his way, and I moved away.
As it often happens, our paths diverged, our friendship waned, but the memories of the laugh, the creativity, the joie de vivre are all still there.
He introduced me to Baez, Barbara, and Balanchine.
He truly was a class act.
And the world is a little less bright.
R.I.P Billy, your absence has left a hole in the hearts of many.
…a funny man dies.
And it breaks even more when that funny man was so sad inside.
But, comics are often troubled souls, and troubled souls often lose hope.
Robin Williams took his own life yesterday.
This is tragic.
Such a waste.
I think of the millions of people he made laugh as Mork or on SNL or in many of the 80 films he made, and my heart breaks a little.
I think of how he brought the Genie to life for millions of kids, and my heart breaks a little.
He once said, “Comedy is acting out optimism.”
Sadly, he forgot that.