Richard Warren Lubart
December 15, 1925 – May 9, 2020
“The Swing” by Robert Louis Stevenson. This is from A Child’s Garden of Verses, first written and published in 1885 for his kids.
How do you like to go up in a swing, Up in the air so blue? Oh, I do think it the pleasantest thing Ever a child can do!
Up in the air and over the wall, Till I can see so wide Rivers and trees and cattle and all Over the countryside—
Till I look down on the garden green, Down on the roof so brown— Up in the air I go flying again, Up in the air and down!
When I was a little kid, Dad would read something to me every night. This was one of my favorite poems because of the way he read it, with whimsy and flair. And, like the poem’s author, he was forever a blue-sky kind of guy.
Dad brought humor and an infectious appreciation of life’s little pleasures to our family—a counterpoint to my mother’s cynicism (which also had its place).
I used to joke that the most important thing my father taught me was to flush a toilet with my foot in a public bathroom. But what I mostly learned from him was to be kind and to treat people less fortunate than we with respect and kindness. A trip to the dry cleaners would always take too long because he knew all the counter people by name and something of their lives. As we left the dry cleaners, the employees would be laughing and smiling. It used to annoy the hell out of me. But he would tell me that he felt that he wanted to brighten part their day. And there were a few nurse’s aides at Wingate who would drop by his room to say Hi after their regular shifts. The social worker at Wingate told me this past week: “Everyone loved your father.”
In his final legal career, he dedicated himself to defending disabled people in court, on appeal, who had been denied social security disability income. He represented clients in many states, driving up and down the East Coast--for not much money (as we know). He knew his clients and their cases. He knew all the judges.. He usually won and took great pride in defeating the government—and always left the courtroom with a smile on his face.
As we know, he told stories. Really, really, really long stories. One Thanksgiving, I had brought my friends Kris and Burke to Boston and we ate at the Top of the Hub. At the bar, waiting for the table---I had gone to the restroom (where I had flushed the toilet with my foot)—he had begun what was basically the story of his life and his careers—including his many disappointments. The story continued at the table through four courses and coffee. I was ready to strangle him. But my friends were amazed at the way he narrated his story; they had never heard anyone tell a story quite like that.
He was a proud father to Darcie and me and a proud grandfather of Alle and John. He was also a proud father-in-law. He bragged about us all. In his final years, he was so thankful, as am I, to Bill and Sinesia for helping him live a comfortable and secure old age.
He was tough. He reinvented himself through enormous financial reversals; he lived on bravely after the untimely and tragic deaths to cancer, first of his wife and then his daughter—our beloved Darcie. And we thought—prematurely—that he had beaten Coronavirus.
I assumed that he felt aggrieved sometimes--that life had given him a raw deal. And during my last visit with him, what seems like a century ago (four months back), we really talked. Like many sons and fathers, we eventually, finally, managed to have a real talk. I was surprised to hear him say that he thought he had had the luckiest and fullest life of anyone he knew. So that was Dick Lubart. We celebrate his spirit today. I will miss him –and, I guess, the long stories, too.
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Richard Warren Lubart
May 19, 2020
Activities at Wingate will never be the same without Richard.
Each morning he would greet me with a smile, a compliment and a funny story. He reminisced often about his military days and some of the pranks he was responsible for ...always with a mischievous grin and twinkle in his eye.
Richard was kind, gentle and always had something lovely to say about his family and most of the residents and staff. He was loved by everyone.
I am heartbroken that his family was robbed of a final goodbye due to our current pandemic.
I will miss Richard more than words can express. Rest In Peace buddy, with love, Marie from activities