TIME – Ward’s Birthday and JoAnne’s Memorial

Ward Bell is 64 years old as of yesterday. Hardly seems possible! I met him 50 years ago at his school in Connecticut when Robert Bell took me to meet his son; Bob and I were not yet married. It was Fall. The photo below was taken just after we met.


To say he was suspicious, or perhaps simply guarded is an understatement. But even at that first meeting, we eventually were able to make some sort of connection, and I was so impressed with the relationship of father and son. They so obviously loved one another.

In the many years since then we have traveled, partied, shared many a meal and wept together. He is truly my son and I treasure our relationship. He inherited from his father the notion of performance as a means for connection in order to communicate, both revel in costume and other props, anything to make an  impression on the audience.

Saturday April 7 was the Memorial for JoAnne Fabian, our family member and beloved friend. I worked on it for weeks, and managed to secure our old house where we had lived for 35 years prior to selling it to Dominican University. The setting could not have been more fitting. Jo often said although she had lived in many other places, this was the house that seemed like home.

photo Magnolia House

Thanks to her younger brother Joe and his wife Phyllis who were with us there were photos of Jo’s young life. And Joe gave a snapshot of her life as he remembered it – he is three years younger. The photos of her and her family were part of my effort to show JoAnne at many different stages of her life in a set of boards.


She was born at home in 1933, in the white house at then top of the board. From left to right in the second row Jo with brother Joe in 1941, in 1943 and with her whole family outside their house in 1943. In the third row (l -r) JoAnne in a Bridgeton, New Jersey High School Yearbook photo in 1951 and a Ursinus College Yearbook photo in 1955. The document next is from her older brother Walter who was unable to attend but wrote a lovely admiring memento about her. Walter is seven years older than JoAnne so he is 91 years old.

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On the planet in California

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