William Charles Roth (Sr.) — In Memoriam

In Memoriam: 10/25/1924 – 12/11/2013

Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of Earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I’ve climbed and joined the tumbling mirth
of sun-split clouds, – and done a hundred things

After 89 years on this earth, on Wednesday night, December 11 2013, my Dad, William Charles Roth (Sr.) passed on… to death, to eternity, to that great tennis court in the sky… I do not know.  Impatient as he always was, we missed his passing by all of 5 minutes.  Yet we had enough time in the few days before to touch him, to speak to him, to tell him that we loved him and that it was OK for him to go on.

Hurry up.  Hurry up.

Those were, appropriately enough, his last words to me.  He may have been dreaming of a trip in his beloved RV.  Or perhaps he really was trying to tell me something deeper.

Today I am in no hurry.  I have spent the day after his death in small, quiet things, trying to live in that space between peace and sorrow, the thin line between life and death.

But I do want to honor this man, and to honor all of us who knew him, put up with him, fed him, poured him drinks… and loved him, each in our own way.  I want to collect our thoughts and memories while they are still fresh, while it is still hard to realize that he’s gone.

I invite you to add any memories, pictures, stories, even his bad jokes, that live in your memory.  Later on I expect to collect them in an organized form.  But for today, please write anything that comes to you.

5 thoughts on “William Charles Roth (Sr.) — In Memoriam

  1. In 1995, I pushed my Dad to talk to me about something important, something… anything.

    After a long, uncomfortable pause… he started talking about World War II. And didn’t stop for over an hour. I heard stories that I’d never known before.

    A few years later, he started writing them down. He used Microsoft Word like a typewriter: the first page was document 1. The second page was document 2. And so on…

    But he gamely continued. So I took his hard work, and pieced it together into a website: http://wwii.thedance.net. And added pictures, entries from his flight log book, and many other things. He was genuinely and justifiably proud of the result, and I was very, very happy to do this ‘with’ him.

    Take a look. If nothing else, scroll down to the Upottery field section, and read about the black armbands made of socks, and “GUN CREW”. That’s my Dad.

  2. (Originally posted by Polly Moore)

    One of the last smiles Dad gave me in his bed at the hospital, was when he said “Sar” and I said “Sarah is good. She likes her job in the City”. He then said “Li”. I said, as I knew what he wanted to hear, “Yes, Liza is still playing tennis. She even played a doubles team by herself and won.”

    My big brother writes that Dad has gone to the “tennis court” in the sky. I think he will also watch Liza this season and the next and put a hoax on her opponents.

    Every time I watch Liza, I think of him, because she is a smart, strategic player; she may not be the strongest, but she is one of the smartest.

    Thank you Dad. I know you loved us and will continue to love us very much.

  3. On Oct 25, 2018 Bill would be 94. I miss him every day. He helped me so very much and I will always love him and be grateful.He and I have had the joy of two children, Polly and Charles and three amazing grand daughters, Sarah Moore, Liza Moore and Emma Roth,,,,They carry on his traditions of doing their best every day…..and not what you do but how you do it.,…..I am blessed for having Bill and my wonderful caring family.

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