Norman developed cancer and was hospitalized for treatment.

One day I went to see him. He was sitting up in the bed. His cheerful wife Ann was holding his hand. They deeply loved each other.

“Hi,” I said to him, “how are you doing?”

“Fine,” he said, “when you have a doctor like Dr. French you don’t have to worry.”

He was wrong. On the way out of the building I met his doctor.

“Morrie,” Frank said sadly, “Norman’s cancer, despite everything modern medicine can do to stop it, is spreading. Norman is dying.”

I choked up and said, “Frank, you did your best, have you told Norm?”

“I’m on my way to do so. It won’t be easy but I’m a doctor. I have to tell my patient the truth.” 

I couldn’t stop thinking how Norman would feel when he heard it. I couldn’t keep tears out of my eyes. I never saw Norman again. He died a few days after my visit. 

He was in his early fifties, a great loss to his family and friends. We will miss his infectious smile, his optimistic view of life.

Goodbye Norm, Rest in Peace

August 12, 2020

Author: Morrie Markoff

Centenarian (born in 1914) who lives in Los Angeles, and is also a metal sculpture artist and the Author of "Keep Breathing," available on and other book seller sites.