Re: [gardeners] Do I have to own a suit to go to a funeral?

George Shirley (
Mon, 02 Feb 1998 08:54:09

At 08:42 PM 2/1/98 -0600, you wrote:
>   A bit late to ask, by now, as it was when I found out half the faculty
>in the department were gone Wednesday to John Pair's funeral down in Wichita.
>A little late as well to ask about working with him on several uncommon woody
>plants that seem to have merit for the Southern Plains.
>   John who? Oh, well, he had his share of fame: high-end awards from AHS,
>ASHS (Am. Soc. for Horticultural Science) and no doubt others.  You can't
>have failed to see his name while delving into Dirr's Manual of Woody
>Landscape Plants.
>   I only met him twice. Once years ago at a Wichita Hort Research Center
>field day, plus one Saturday morning a few years later when I wandered in
>because the gate was open, and he was out in the plantings taking notes.
>   Those occasions stick in my mind in part because they were among the few
>long conversations with an intelligent person I _had_ back in those days -
>and maybe because he was the only person who ever actually encouraged me to
>go into horticulture.
>   "Inspiration" is no doubt too strong a term - I probably take that little
>better than I do advice - but...  aw, hell, I don't suppose in the last few
>years of his life he would've liked to know he'd had some part in bringing
>someone to professional horticulture who could envision worse careers than
>taking much the same kind of work he did into the next century.
Well written Bob, I hope my obituary from a friend is as good.