Saturday, November 25, 2023

Memorial service for Vic Fuchs

 Yesterday, at Etz Chayim Synagogue,  Palo Alto.

Here is my brief eulogy:

Vic was the patriarch of a clan, and a man of wide and old friendships. He was, by the way, also a brilliant, erudite, compassionate economist.

Emilie and I were among his new friends. In 2013 we bought a house down the hill from Vic, and held an open house; he came over, carrying his own chair-back, and was the life of the party.  In those days he used to reply to questions about how he was doing with a joke: “I’m in perfect health—my psychiatrist says it’s all in my body.”

That joke got less funny as his body continued to betray him, and after a while he stopped telling it.

When he joined us for dinner, he and Emilie would negotiate the menu. (He was a fussy eater, who liked his food very plain).

In 2016, when Vic joined us to watch one of the debates among Democratic primary candidates for president, he couldn’t contain himself when they discussed health care, and I gave him a lift home before the debate concluded, so he could write an op-ed. He was still in the game.

During Covid, he stopped leaving his house except to go to the doctor. As his mobility declined, our visits migrated from his patio, to the downstairs living room, and eventually up the half flight of stairs to his office.

Vic’s mind remained sharp. We were able to visit him until about a month before he passed away. He was worried about the world, but still eager to hear jokes, and to tell them.

He was a role model, and a pleasure to spend time with.  

Vic was a man of many parts, and his life was full of accomplishments, admirers, family and friends for whom his memory will be a blessing.

Sunday, September 17, 2023

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