A while back, I wrote about a friend who was sick. Terminally ill, as it turned out.
Peter was a baseball fan, and more particularly a whole-hearted, unabashed, and season-ticket-holding fan of the San Francisco Giants, whether or not they happened to be any good in a given season.
Things were touch and go for Peter last fall, but he reached a “plateau” in his illness. He got to see the Giants win that Sunday game they needed to make the playoffs, then mow down the Braves and Phillies and get into the World Series. Then he got to see the Giants beat the Rangers to take the Series. He wasn’t well during that great run, but I know that he made one or two of the late-season and playoff games.
I talked to Peter the morning after the Giants to congratulate him. He was clearly thrilled and said, “Well, now I’ll have to live until next season.”
Two or three weeks ago, Kate got a message from one of Peter’s daughters that if friends wanted to see her dad, they’d better come soon. Kate and I spent a couple afternoons sitting with him in his sickroom — his bedroom at his home in North Berkeley. He was getting drugs to ease pain and was mostly knocked out. On one or two occasions he knew we were there.
Last night, the Giants opened the new season against the Dodgers. A little while after the game, Kate got an email from one of Peter’s daughter’s:
“My father died at 6:34pm this evening in the bottom of the sixth inning with a big smile on his face.”