I’ve been thinking about Ken Rinciari, my friend who died over two years ago and whose life I am researching for my next book. I have felt an emptiness throughout my recent book/birthday celebration. While it’s all been great and people close to me have been uber supportive, my online conversations with Ken and his unwavering support of me is missing. I’d bet he and his longtime companion, Dawn, would have even made a trip from Holland to NYC to attend my book launch/birthday party and celebrate with me!
Thinking about Ken not being here hurts my brain. He was the first person really close to me who died. There have been more since, but his death was a huge blow.
For my research, I’ve been reaching out to his friends in the Netherlands where he lived as an ex-pat for the past 30-odd years, who have been most kind. And, to Ken’s remaining family members, old friends in his hometown of NYC and colleagues who knew him when he was at Grove Press in its heyday in the 50s/60s along with others who somehow had a connection with him. Here are a few brief excerpts of what people have said about Ken:
From Dawn: “…Ken loved your writings…he adored you too and took every turn in your fortunes to heart.”
From a woman, probably aroundl my age, who knew Ken her whole life: I am so glad you are writing a book about Ken. He was a special person.”
From his cousin: Although Kenny and I were political polar opposites, we shared a deep love for each other. I cant begin to tell you how much I miss his kind soul. That’s not to say we didn’t engage in knock down political debates, but they always ended respectfully. I’m quite sure he was as frustrated with my strong beliefs, as I was with his. My view of life came from 32 years of being a cop, and his stemmed from a lifetime passion of a professional artist, and photographer. That in itself is quite an odd mix!