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A great friendship was cut short by death

Date published: 9/24/2013

Sadly, I did not know Paul Akers for long enough.

We became instant friends when we met three years ago, I suspect, because of our mutual love and respect for the English language: that and a shared boyish joy of pointing and shaking sticks at today's version of politicians.

I described him to my English friends as a true patrician; tall, honourable, scholarly, gentle, and infinitely wise. A good man who always saw and understood both sides of an argument who, as a pressman, always saw fit to print opinions contrary to his own.

Paul was the eloquent embodiment of Anton Chekhov's words, "Man is what he believes." He believed in his God, his love of his wife ("Ms. Bouvier") and his family, his own frequently quirky take on politics, an innate sense of fair play, and his inalienable right to love baseball in all its forms--even though the Nationals, often, made him want to cry out loud.

We shared a love of the words of John Donne and some of those are appropriate now:

A gentle giant has passed from our midst, and I know I shall not be alone in believing that I did not know Paul Akers well or long enough.

Keith Hudson

Banbury, England.