Brianne and I want to share with you some favorite memories of our dear mom and wife. This won’t be a bio. We’re not focusing on chronological order. Simply some thoughts and images on who she was and what she meant to us, and to the people she touched in her lifetime.

To be, inside, never again the same

Lynn’s sketch

Lynn and I first heard these words at a midnight mass sermon back in Brooklyn in the 1970s. I can say, for me, I am never again the same because of her love for me.

Lynn died in the evening on Christmas Eve, 2020. It was her favorite holiday. When we first knew each other, in Brooklyn, we would go to midnight mass, then go house-hopping with friends all night till the sun came up. Bacon and eggs at one house, snacks at another, more food at still more homes. Christmas Eve was the time for family gift exchange through all our years together.

Lynn’s baby shower with her sister Claire

Brianne joined us on a 103 degree July day in Brooklyn. She is our joy!

The three of us

When Bri was little, we would host SNL viewing parties in our apartment. With three or four other couples, we’d laugh, dress up for Halloween, treasure those late nights. One of our favorite sketches from later years was the Alex Trebek/Sean Connery re-do of Jeopardy. “We meet again, Trebek.” One of our media production classes did a video parody of that sketch, which left us in tears of laughter every time we remembered it.


Lynn’s sister Ann with dog Hooligan

Family meant so much to Lynn. She was there for them, and they for us, when one needed help, support, a hug. Thanksgivings we would drive from Brooklyn to upstate New York to her sister Ann’s house, to celebrate with her mom Fran and her sister Claire. Ann’s dog Hooligan could clear a room with his farts!

Fran on a rainy day in Nantucket

When Fran retired, she took an apartment on the island of Nantucket. Christmas, Easter and summer we drove up to Hyannis to catch the ferry over to the island. We would walk the beaches, stroll along Main Street, browse in Mitchell’s books and the shops.

Easter on Nantucket

When Brianne was school-age, Lynn walked her to and from class every day. Walking anywhere in Brooklyn took time. There were always neighbors sitting on their stoops, calling out to say hi, starting conversations. When we moved to Los Angeles, she again walked Bri to school daily. No one walks anywhere in LA. But, true to her New York roots, Lynn never got her license.

Our creative beginnings

Lynn studied for a year at New York’s Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT).

One of her FIT design sketches
Her digital sketch of Bri

I have to tell you about Lynn’s vision and determination. Around 1984, living in Brooklyn, she was, for a time, a big fan of country music. She especially liked a singer/songwriter named Eddie Rabbitt. One day she said to me, let’s interview him. I replied, huh? Us?

Our first interview

In the days before Internet and email, she started calling magazine editors to propose the interview. An editor from record-collector magazine Goldmine agreed to try us out. She called the singer’s people, arranged an interview, and off we went to Atlantic City to catch him after a performance.

I recorded the interview, then transcribed it by hand. We searched for a hook to pull the reader in, then literally cut and pasted the pages to create a flow for the article.

From there we interviewed three other prominent entertainment people. Looking for the hook always got us into the publications.

August 1987: our last photo before flying to LA

We moved to LA in the summer of 1987. We came out on a vacation trip so Bri could visit Disneyland. I interviewed with several companies, got an offer, and two months later we were settled in California. And never looked back.

Once settled in LA, she and I took a screenwriting course from Michael Hauge, wrote several spec scripts and treatments. We went on to write a monthly online educator discussion guide for a national print magazine. In the course of five years we posted 60 guides. 

Our years in Studio City

Lynn was invited to set up and teach a primary-grade program at St. Francis de Sales in Sherman Oaks called Writing to Read. It was a program developed by ex-Mayor Richard Riordan to encourage kids to read by getting them writing early. Lynn loved working with the children. The kids in turn wrote wonderful stories using phonetics, before they were old enough to learn proper spelling.

Lynn and Bri on the set of Medicine Woman

We were fans of the CBS television drama Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman. Lynn put a proposal together to develop teacher guides based on the show’s post-Civil war historical accuracy. We met with Beth Sullivan, the producer, and spent many hours on set in Paramount Ranch for about 18 months. Unfortunately, CBS declined to go with the project. Those set visits were a treasure for us. We spent hours talking with actors and crew, learning more about the business of making film. If you want to know what’s happening on set, talk to Hair and Makeup!

Music and film

She was there!

Lynn’s knowledge of music, television and film was legendary. Her early favorites included Paul Revere and the Raiders, Bobby Vee, the Beatles, American Bandstand, and all of R&B.

The Raiders

Some of her favorite films include: The Uninvited, Moonstruck, The Philadelphia Story, and many Hallmark TV movies. Any movie with Cary Grant was a keeper.

Media production course

We moved from Studio City to the eastern tip of Ventura County in 1997. A year later we were invited to develop a media production course at Louisville High School. While neither of us was accredited, the principal wanted someone with entertainment industry experience to create a facilitated learning environment for a filmmaking course. We taught junior/senior high school girls for 11 years. We were both honored and proud to be part of the school’s faculty. 

Lynn believed in the students. She demanded honesty and participation. She fought for her students, defending their work and decisions when they put themselves behind their work. She taught the students to fight for themselves, to defend what they believed in.

We taught the students to work as teams in a collaborative environment. They always demonstrated creativity and imagination…and humor. Their parodies of films such as Twilight, High School Musical, and Harry Potter were spot-on. And one team shot a western spoof at Paramount Ranch, even writing their own score on GarageBand.

On set at Paramount Ranch

Stage mom

Lynn loved theatre. She took Brianne to see the Nutcracker at the Met before we moved from Brooklyn. Brianne’s first theatre experience was Annie at the Westbury Theater on Long Island.

Later Lynn became a surrogate stage mom for many of the theatre students at LMU, where she and I attended every performance of every production the student theatre company staged. She loved to see the nuances in an actor’s performance through each night of the run.

The Stella

Later, after Bri’s graduation, she and I supported the LMU alums in the Metropolis Dance Company as they put together a five year run of productions. Many of them were staged at the Stella Adler Theater at Hollywood and Highland. Brianne was the costume designer. Many nights we carpooled, arriving early so Bri could prep costumes. Lynn and I sat in the darkened theater, listening to the dancers’ banter and laughter as they warmed up. The Stella, and Metropolis, hold a very warm place in our hearts because of those nights.

Brianne now does costume design for all the theater and dance productions at Campbell Hall High School. There too, Lynn and I attended many productions.

Live sound

Here’s a major highlight of our California lives. Brianne’s elementary school held a fundraising carnival every May. One year the leaders decided to go big. Lynn and I were invited, with another couple, to run the entertainment for each weekend. The school rented a full concert stage, lights, a powerful sound system. Our committee lined up live entertainment for the entire weekend each year. Back to back acts from Friday evening through Sunday night. Each act had a forty-five minute set. We hustled them on and off, ran sound checks, and kept the music going. We ran live sound for each act. Some of the performers were local bands, high school kids. Others were established musicians. Jazz musicians, LA session players, even some of the guys from Toto. Their keyboardist taught us to run the board. We have never had so much fun. We even got to create the playlist for the fireworks display!

One evening, while we were running sound, a boy of about 11 came over to watch. We invited Patrick to sit and run the board for a while. The following year he ran up to us to say he had bought his own soundboard and mixer. Years later we saw him on the local news being interviewed as an audio guy in the industry!

The work goes on

Following retirement in 2009, we developed websites and blogs on filmmaking and storytelling.  There we interviewed over 60 filmmakers and storytellers, catching some of them in the early days of now-established careers.

And we wrote two ebooks for educators based on the content and syllabus of our high school course. The books continue to sell, after almost ten years. The original Louisville media vision lives on.

I moved into writing fiction about six years ago. Lynn always had my back, offering advice both pro and con for my work.

Killing me softly with her song

Lynn is gone now. Her spirit will live on. I can say I will never be the same, even after losing her. She is with me, in my heart, in my spirit. Always. Our song was “Killing me Softly.”

Strumming my pain with her fingers
Singing my life with her words
Killing me softly with her song
Killing me softly with her song
Telling my whole life with her words
Killing me softly with her song

Thanks for visiting with us. Lynn would not want flowers or donations to charities. I think her only wish would be, love one another fiercely.

Bye, Lynn.

A blessing

Here’s a quote from John O’Donohue’s book, To Bless the Space Between Us. This is part of a blessing titled: On the Death of the Beloved.

Let us not look for you only in memory,

Where we would grow lonely without you.

You would want us to find you in presence,

Beside us when beauty brightens,

When kindness glows

And music echoes eternal tones.

(Check back occasionally. We will add photos as we unearth them in our files.And your comments are welcome. 1/17/21)

More photos

Lynn and I on eastern Long Island
Lynn’s photo of me and Bri at Tanglewood, MA
Main Street, Nantucket in the 80s
Lynn, Bob, Bri in 1990
Louisville HS faculty chaperones
Our favorite place for Sunday lunch in Burbank. And Lynn loved Easter and Mother’s Day brunch at our local Hyatt.
Another of Lynn’s digital sketches

Jane Seymour and Joe Lando from Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman
Brian Wilson says it for me.