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  • Writer's pictureGerald Tindal

Day 85: Preparing...

Updated: Nov 11, 2018


The days of the past week or so have been spent preparing, much like you would been with your classmates and your 5Fore team mates. Preparing a presentation of your accomplishments. For you, the golf hat, finally ready for production, distribution, and beginning a business in the sports industry. For me, preparing a summary of 35 years of research and development at the UO. For you, a career about to begin. For me a career about to end and be passed on.

In the usual ironic twist of events and topics with you in the moment, we watched Free Solo, the documentary of Alex Honnold’s free climb of El Capitan in Yosemite National Park—without a rope: 3,200 feet of vertical ascent. His life spent preparing for this single event. Years in the making with indecision. Plans called off. Delayed. But eventually accomplished. His views of life were worth noting particularly because he danced with death daily. His views so well placed with doubt respected and regret/remorse only in not trying.

Next month, we will attend an event with your team presenting and you in absentia, guiding from behind in a spiritual way. Being with them and us in memory: so damn hard to keep alive with the distinctiveness of you really not being here. Each day, growing a bit dimmer, both a blessing and a curse. Which is why I write: not to let you go.

In a dress rehearsal last year that was filmed by Merryn, we saw you and Michael describe the qualities of your golf hat. What it meant and how it was branded, eventually to be baked. It’s a video worth keeping. Doubt respected and regret/remorse only in not trying.

After writing a letter on Day 63 with her depiction of your ‘ad improv’, I received the most beautiful response, noting the beginning of this year: “Karsten continues to inspire so many in the SPM program. I taught a new group of 50 students last month in that same workshop where I met Karsten last year. I was flooded with memories of his smile, his charisma, and his potential as new faces looked towards me at the front of the room. It isn’t nearly enough but hopefully knowing that his legacy is living on brightly in the walls of 109 NW Naito Pkwy gives you some joy around the impact your son had on the lives of so many in our SPM family. Students, faculty, and staff continue to talk about him regularly and wish that things were different. I know I speak for so many when I say he lives on so warmly in our hearts”. Merryn

Today we will be presenting much like your team will present on December 4. You will be guiding us from behind.

We love you.


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