I don’t think my son knows enough about me to write a good obituary. And so for 2017, I hope to sit down and look back on my life and offer highlights to appear in the Philadelphia Inquirer if it should still be publishing years from now.
I’d write about the kid who liked to write when he was a grade school. He started with an admiration for the Marines. He loved the song — the Marine Corp Hymn –and hoped one day he’d be just like John Wayne marching up the hills of Iwo Jima enroute to the glory you see in that Pulitzer-Prize winning photograph. Little Mikey never became a Jar head, but he did dress up and played a grunt in the army for the Vietnam War.
The other thing that boy wanted to be when he got to be older was an actor. Heck, he seemed to grow into every role he played throughout his life. The whole world’s a stage, Shakespeare said, and that Contoveros kid relished the acting he’d perform by being a romantic teenager, a soldier, a newspaper reporter and then a lawyer fighting injustice in the Philadelphia court system.
Yeah, Contoveros could write about each and every one for the obit. Each role was simply an act he’d follow in hopes of fooling everyone with whom he really was.
The little sensitive boy with an imagination he could express through his words and his actions.
The obit could then appear in the funny papers if he got lucky.