"a stellar example of what a citizen should be"
Such was written in a local newpaper about Bob Fitzer, musician and citizen activist who lost his battle with pancreatic cancer in May.
He was a renowned clarinetist, playing Carnegie Hall at 19 years of age, and was a faculty member at Youngstown's Dana School of Music. He was the president of the Citizens' League of Greater Youngstown and from 1995 to 2001, he served as host and producer of the WYSU radio show Commentary Cafe.
He was a friend and teacher to many.
And in the weeks and months after his passing, many tributes to Bob appeared in the media and local blogs.
Stories were written in the Youngstown Vindicator, the Warren Tribune-Chronicle, YSU publications, the Jambar, Louie Free's blog, the Business-Journal, and message boards . . .
The Metro Monthly even has a special page up for Bob, which includes a recent interview and his entry in the Congressional Record.
Here is the most recent photo I have of Bob, leading a tour in January after the initial meeting to save the facade of the State Theater. He is explaining to a group of people the structure's footprint between Federal Street and Boardman Street downtown:
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So depending if someone decides to leave these stories in the archives or on data servers, the memories we produce on the internet will exist for public access for hundreds, if not thousands of years to come.
In the year 2050, will someone stumble upon the memory of Bob Fitzer?
In the year 3000, will someone be reading the archives of the Shout Youngstown blog?
But only if we generate the content.
Blogging and the internet presents us with a unique format to preserve the memories that are important to us, even when we are no longer on this earth.
What stories do you have, that you wish your family may read one day?
Is there some detail about your mom, or your old neighborhood that you can share?
Blogging allows us to do this for future generations. If you want to create a blog recalling the stories about your family, setting up a blog is as easy as creating an email account. You can start here or here and have a story online within twenty minutes.
Interested? Give it a try, and then post your blog in the comments section below. Then others can read your stories, and perpetuate the memories that are important to you.
Perhaps then, leveraging technology to record memories, is a way to live forever.
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Bob's public memorial concert will be on Friday, July 27 at 7:30 in the Ford Recital Hall at the Deyor Performing Arts Center in Downtown Youngstown.
Another great local blog, Youngstown Renaissance, listed Bob Fitzer's 10 rules of living. Some good words to live by, now recorded to be read for generations . . .
Bob (aka "Bobby", aka "Bobbo") Fitzer's 10 Rules of Living:
1. Get Involved
2. Be Kind
3. Never Give Up
4. Rejoice in the Success of Others
5. Take Chances
6. Be Humble
7. Embrace Chaos
8. Take Time
9. Trust in Your Intuition
10. Don't Move to the Suburbs