Julia O'Malley's thoughtful piece on Michael Anderson was beautifully written.
Her pain and confusion with how best to remember a once favorite character in her life mirrors mine. My memories of Mike through the years are happy; I loved that he remembered I was a raw onion girl, I enjoyed sharing travel tales and I enjoyed his razzing for some of my more questionable summer outfits.
Mike was the annual treat whose arrival I anticipated much as a child anticipates the arrival of Santa Claus. Mike's death and the circumstances surrounding it haunt me. I never drive down 4th Avenue without recalling happy times waiting in his line and mentally gearing up for whatever he might have had in store for me on any given day.
I struggle with how best to remember this man who made me happy year after year, but who was flawed. I tell myself that we are all flawed, but that we do our best. Then I remind myself that I cannot disregard the experience of his alleged victim (alleged, as he had not been convicted) and I am left with a sad heart and a million questions.
Thank you, Julia, for letting me know I am not alone in my grief and confusion.
— Mary Ann Chaney