GloucesterTimes.com, Gloucester, MA

Opinion

August 19, 2013

Fishtown Local: Don't wait 'til it's too late

What is happening around us this summer? Has anyone else noticed that there has been an exceptionally high number of people dying recently?

Or is it just that they were so well known and the number has been around average?

Steve Malbeouf recently passed away and he will be missed. Steve basically created the equipment rental business here in Gloucester from scratch with Gloucester Rental on Maplewood Avenue.

For years, he also ran the Wingaersheek Beach Association, and kept the peace on that less trammeled arm of Gloucester. But he was an everyday part of the regular old nuts-and-bolts Gloucester that every tradesman around here — and not just a few homeowners — knew well.

If you wanted to rent a log-splitter, tent, tables, chainsaw, chairs, glasses, trench-digger, staging — well, you get the idea — Steve would take care of you. And in the most mellow, friendly, assuring way, too.

A more reasonable fellow you’d never meet. He knew that what goes around comes around, especially in his business.

He knew when to bestow a well-timed favor, too, as he did multiple times — like lending a free stage to tiny St. Mel’s school theater program when they put on plays for the little kiddies. He even came to one of the shows. He was an all-around good guy.

The list of recent departed seems shockingly long. Since Richard Gaines left the scene in early summer, Richard Earle, Paul MacPherson, Howard Richardson, Busty Frontiero, Bob Tarbox, Ben Hersey, Carroll Wonson (my old dentist), Steven Scotti, Babette Brackett, Joe Brancaleone, Chipp Wells, Dr. John Wolfe, Elizabeth Moulton and Rockport’s John Krenn have all departed as well.

These were just the folks I knew; I’m sure your list is just as long.

The papers have been full of lists for a host of other losses locally. Even nationally, the news seems full of the passing of James Gandolfini, Dr. Joyce Brothers, Jean Stapleton — Archie Bunker’s Edith of “All in the Family” fame — and even Cory Montcrief from “Glee.”

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