Thursday, April 9, 2009

Richard Schiedt Died Yestrerday









If you just count people from generation or the one before, this man's name and/or face was known by thousands of people. Most of you have known for many years how the core of THE HOLY TERROR came from the prologue that I based on the Our Lady of Angels fire on December 1st, 1958. It's the reason the word 'holy' is in the title itself, and when I attended St. Fidelus at Haddon and Washtenaw for kindergarten and first grade, quite a few of my classmates had an older brother or sister who had died in the OLA fire. Thhere's that infamous photo of Scheidt carrying dead Jimmy Janjkowski through the front hallway. He had retired to Oak Lawn in the 90s, so today I put on my graveyard suit, took the bus to 95th and walked a mile to a funeral parlor that really needs to have a shorter name. I walked to the casket and looked at the face of the guy I have my entire life seen in black and white. James Minnick died about a decade ago. Scheidt was 81, and I really don't believe any of the firemen on the scene that day are left. The firemen are all gone and they've taken the ghosts with them.

5 comments:

David Niall Wilson said...

Sorry to hear of the loss, Wayne. Seems not only an amazing, brave man, but an inspiration to an author I admire.

For the record, I have your blog now on Google Reader, and a widget on IGoogle that tells me every time something new posts...very easy to keep up now. Haven't seen you much on Twitter...

Dave

Capcom said...

Aw. :-(

And when you're a kid (or still a kid at heart) it's hard to believe that brave firemen like that could ever die.

Charles Gramlich said...

What a powerful photo. I'm sorry to hear of his passing. It's definitely like an era has come to a close.

Lana Gramlich said...

Sorry to hear it. Ironically, just today I was talking with my coworker about how the knowledge & experiences of today fades so quickly once we're gone. Memory/history is a fickle thing, at best.

HemlockMan said...

"...and they've taken the ghosts with them."

If you don't use that for a short story title, I'm going to take it.