Death was kind and gentle with dear friend David Marks last week, taking him while he slept in the family home where he grew up. David earned an easy one.
Linda and I first met David in the late 1970s at access radio CJUM-FM in Winnipeg. He did an all-night show on Sundays that was an excellent mix of new wave, old wave and his own eclectic tastes, plus he was a huge Springsteen fan too. We became good friends, faithful friends, sharing many happy occasions. Though we saw less of David over the years, when we did get together for long funny dinners over beers and omelettes at the Garwood Grill, we all left elated and filled with good fellowship. That describes David well – he was a good fellow. Loyal and honest, never missed sending a card for our birthdays, a cat lover and appreciator of high-quality TV drama (Deadwood was his favourite show of all time, he told me recently), that was only part of David.
As much as he liked his friends and cats and dramas, David’s one life-long passion was baseball. From childhood on, he was an avid, no, fervent, no, rabid baseball fan. He talked lovingly about collecting baseball cards as a kid and going to games with his dad. David was an accountant with a great head for numbers. Over dinner I remember him saying how he thought memorizing all those baseball statistics when he was a kid, from 7 years old on, was great training for his present work. In recent decades, he planned his weeks of vacation to catch the maximum number of Major League games in as many different cities as possible.
David’s best baseball story would be taking a stab at becoming Commissioner of Baseball when Bowie Kuhn stepped down in 1984. He started a petition here in Winnipeg and on the West Coast among his friends and associates, made his intentions to become Commissioner known and the media showed up. Scott Oake of CBC-TV Sports interviewed David who was nervous, charming and reminded me of Dennis the Menace. The Winnipeg Free Press ran a short article with a big picture under the heading: The Man Who Would Be Kuhn, as seen below. But David never got to be the Commish. His dream deflated. He’d just have to settle for being one of the most intense, ravenous baseball fans ever.
So long David. Catch you on the rebound.
This is the Winnipeg Free Press article that appeared under the headline
The Man Who Would Be Kuhn