R.I.P. Bobby Carroll

I just found out Bobby Carroll died last week.  Thanks to many of you, his last months were more financially tolerable than they would have otherwise been.  (I found out a couple of months ago, but regretfully never reported, Bobby’s fundraiser took in nearly $9,000)

Some cancer battles are easier to win than others but many times the deciding factor is early detection.  Bobby’s esophogal cancer was of the more advanced variety and he confided to me how he should have heeded the advance warnings his body was conveying.

Once you get to a certain age… say… the age you or I currently are… if you think something just isn’t right with your body, you are probably right.

How many of us have had a wierd ache in our chest that lasted too long, or a feeling of malaise that just didn’t feel like our normal malaise?  You figured that if you ignored it long enough it would go away – and, normally, again, you were right.

Bobby wasn’t.  I’ll miss him.

During my stint as a salesman for a school fundraising company four years ago, I helped Rankin Elementary School’s PTA make a bunch of money for the school.  Bobby was PTA president.. and then some.

Starting, running and completing a school fundraiser is a ton of work and generally requires the assistance of a minimum of 10 – 12 hard working volunteers.  During that year, for all practical purposes, Rankin had one – Bobby.  I had never seen a person so dedicated to the improvement of his daughter Laney’s, school.

Bobby, a hairstylist by trade, spent nearly as much time at Rankin as the janitor.  Sure, he’d bitch and moan about the fact that other parents ought to be involved and how much work it was to atttain the extra things that a well run PTA can provide for a struggling school – but bottom line – he just sucked it up and did it.

Bobby answered for me a question that many parents ask when confronted with a school that just isn’t up to their high expectations: “What can one person do to make a difference?”

My friend’s answer was simple: A lot.

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