RARA-AVIS: Goodis Grave

From: Edward Pettit (epetti01@yahoo.com)
Date: 26 Jan 2009

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    Spent Sunday afternoon at David Goodis' gravesite in Roosevelt Memorial Park, just outside of Philly.  Jan 25 is the anniversary of his death in 1967.  I grew up in a house just blocks away from Goodis' last residence in Philly in East Oak Lane, although as a kid I had never heard of him (and he died about ten months before I was born).  At GoodisCon in Philly a couple years ago (which has now morphed into NoirCon), a bunch of the attendees trekked out to Goodis' grave to honor him, but I couldn't make it, so I didn't want to pass up the opportunity today.  Lou Boxer and Aaron Finestone organized the outing.

    Thirteen of us braved the cold to have a little noir-themed memorial service.  In attendance was Andy Kervorkian, who met Goodis in the early '60s (Goodis went to high school with one of Andy friends) and also attended Goodis' funeral in 1967.  Also present was Dutch Silver who taught David, and his brother Herbert, how to shoot pool in the pool halls of Philly in the '50s and '60s.  Dutch was at GoodisCon and told some anecdotes then.  Larry Withers, who has been making a documentary about Goodis for the last couple years, filmed today's memorial.  Finestone read a bit from Ecclesiastes and then several of us read passages from Goodis' works.  It was an appropriately cold, bleak day for a noir celebration (if that's not an oxymoron itself) for a great Philly noir writer. 

    Duane Swierczynski was also there and he posted about our luncheon afterwards at his blog: http://secretdead.blogspot.com/ and he posted some video here: http://www.youtube.com/user/duaneswier

    Finestone has some pictures from the memorial two years ago at GoodisCon: http://homepage.mac.com/babaganouj/goodiscon/page1/page1.html along with lots of other great stuff about Goodis and a post about today's memorial here: http://homepage.mac.com/babaganouj/front/

    A bit from Withers' documentary is on YouTube, as well: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Rj0lPIOfa0

    You know what I'm reading tonight.

    Enjoy, Ed

     Ed & Edgar, my adventures in the cult of Poe The Bibliothecary, a blog of literary endeavour http://bibliothecary.squarespace.com/


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