Denver’s Final Curtain Call
I sat in my car, not wanting to get out. I was here to attend the funeral of my good friend, Denver Kaufman. Many of you probably didn’t even know his name, but you certainly benefitted from his talent. No, he wasn’t a doctor, a lawyer, or even a politician. But Denver had the power to move mountains and light up a stage!
As the head person responsible for the Rose Hart Theater and many of the events at the Civic Center, Denver seemed to be everywhere. Even in the kitchen, I still called on Denver for help. He would pass through, grab a bite to eat, and sit for a short visit. He was always jovial, a Willie Nelson sort of guy.
Denver helped hundreds of stage productions, all behind that big black curtain. We shared so many years….not the glitzy, showy, glamorous center stage, but the backstage headaches, glitches, and problems that always cropped up at the last minute. When everything was perfect again, we would share a smile, a hand-wave, and a chuckle, as we both knew it would happen again next time.
So I gathered my courage and went into the church. It was filled with Civic Center personnel, politicians, dance instructors, Mardi Gras Captains, friends, and family. The service was beautiful and touching. As the casket was being escorted from the church by the Buccaneers, a final tribute was given, complete with black curtains, spotlights, and a mournful “last curtain call.”
Through tearful eyes and a heavy heart, I exited the church. Since I had known Denver for many decades, the realization of what a short time we have on this earth became a stark reality. But, there is a much larger stage up in the sky where I hope to see my friend once more. Thank you Denver, for your friendship!