May 2010

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30 Responses to “Leave your comments here!”

  • Joy:

    Dear Gary and Shekinah. What a blessing Gary was and still is in spirit! We will always remember your caring spirit, Gary, your beautiful music, your wonderful caring manner, your Caregiver seminar you led (with no monetary fee) and just who you are!

  • 46 years ago at Livonia’s Franklin High School, I was the “nerd” and Gary was the “greaser”. However unlikely a pairing, us two became the best of friends, much to the chagrin of some of Gary’s fellow “greaser” friends — “Why would you want to hang around with that “nerd” ?”.

    Well, this nerd was involved in “ham” radio, all sorts of musical instruments, cave exploring & a number of other such goofball endeavors that much interested Gary, so the pairing was a natural.

    Nearly a half a century later, we remain(ed) the best of friends. Damn – I hate that (ed) part). Distance (I live near Cheboygan, way up north) could well serve to make maintaining such a friendship difficult, but in the end, it really didn’t.

    Gary was the very most upbeat, inquisitive, friendly and talented individuals I have ever run across, and he remained so all his life!

    Gary and I were good buddies through “hippie-daze” (Gary’s term) (hope my 14 year old daughter doesn’t read this!) We both came to realize the spiritual underpinnings of this life. A realization that shaped both of us & remain(ed)s a wonderful, life-guiding force still.

    My last visit to Gary and Shekinah’s was just a couple of months ago, while on work assignment in downtown Detroit. My work partner and I had a wonderful time hobnobbing at the Logan’s house then eating at a nice middle-eastern restaurant in Dearborn. Such a pleasure to see these two who where so obviously made for each other!

    Last summer Gary invited me on his vacation to the UP. It was JUST like the two of us were kids again — same “wild abandon”, same comaraderie (SP), same sense of adventure as we explored waterfalls, wilderness trails, old haunts from trips years past,

    One short tale: On a caving trip in the the snow-covered mountain roads of West Virginia a lifetime ago, Gary decided he needed a snort of Sinex nasal spray. While driving, he reached into his pocket & pulled out the dispenser. I heard a loud exclamation & looked over just in time to see a long stalagtite of Jergen’s Lotion hanging from his nostril! He’d inadvertantly grabbed the lotion bottle & snorted that instead of the Sinex bottle. Some things you never forget!

    I could go on forever. Suffice to say, Gary’s untimely death will by no means put an end to his adventures nor to the memory of Gary amongst those of us who remain on this planet.

    Dennis Havlena (best-man at Gary’s wedding to Shekinah — what a wonderful lady!)

  • Craig Brann:

    My heart constricted when I first heard of Gary’s death . . . . he was a wonderful being . . being human. His creativity shown through the compositions and performances of Syncronicity. I also loved his tinkering side that preferred to get used instruments and make something new out of them. I have a vivid memory of the last time I saw him at our chant/meditation service earlier this month where he played a propane tank (made by a friend) which sounded like a steel drum while Shekinah led us all in a beautiful and original chant. Gary I miss you and am sad I will not experience your warm and laid back personality again. I see you having a blessed transition into a new reality . . . shining and smiling. And my thoughts are with you, Shekinah, as you adjust to this tremendous loss.

  • connie snow:

    Gary and Shekinah have been very special people to me over the past few years.

    I always looked forward to when they were performing at Interfaith. I loved their music. I guess like Gary, I am a “old hippie” at heart.

    When Shekinah sang at my Mom’s funeral, her voice filled my heart with love and spirit.

    As I got to know Gary better while helping him with the Caregiver Workshop at Interfaith, I could better understand why Gary and Shekinah were such a perfect match. Kind, loving, insightful and beautiful. Gary had so much patience with me in trying to explain “power point” and other computer aspects.

    He shopped at my store finding Shekinah the perfect birthday gift.

    We will all miss Gary for so many reasons.
    Shekinah, please let the love that surrounds you comfort you. Gary lives on in you.

    Much love.

  • Lorri Coburn:

    Gary came into the Interfaith bookstore a few weeks ago with a box of books. In there were his old social work texts, and I (also being a social worker)said, “I remember this one!” Perhaps Gary had an intuition of his transition to Spirit and was cleaning out his physical area.

    Gary and Shekinah struck me with their twin flame soul mate connection. The story of their meeting is powerful proof of the destiny of joined souls. Their relationship was, and remains, a beautiful testament to the love of Spirit. Gary and Shekinah, You are forever one.

  • Tom Lincoln:

    It was 1981 & I was a novice spiritual seeker. The East had become more prominent in the West but not as quickly available as today with the internet. In this year a radio show began broadcasting from Ann Arbor called New Dimensions (which is now owned by Stanford university) & what an awakening it brought to this area on WUOM. This show inspired me to try to start a study group around it in 9-1982 in Macomb county where I still live today but to no avail. BUT then in the summer of 1983 I discovered more fans of this show in Ann Arbor which was started by a UM history grad named Robert Dise, Gary Logan, Rebecca Mullen, & others. Gary & I shared a common interest in a guru named Franklin Jones (aka Da Free John) & he shared with me his superior knowledge of gurus like Muktananda, Albert Rudolph (aka Swami Rudrananda), Coptic Fellowship, etc. He also informed me about psychedelics & many other topics during these meetings & he always seemed to have connections to other people to bring to this study group. The group even met a few times at his old apartment complex in southern A2. This group, off & on, continued to have meetings up until 1991 with probably over 150 meetings covering many topics. For me it was a glorius time with an open forum with unlimited topics. No other place could cover as many topics as we did outside of a prominent growth center like Esalen in CA or Omega Institute on the East Coast.

    & beyond these years i remember hearing Gary talk about his good times with Amy & Shekinah, him being on Belle Isle during the paradigm shattering Love-In of 1967, him seeing ascended master guru Elizabeth Clare Prophet, him doing New Dimensions sessions (8-5-1985) on ‘Is the New Age here?’ & another on ‘Yoga:Masters & Paths’ (6-25-1986), him seeing ufologist Stanton Friedman in Dearborn MI, him seeing a plack commerating guru Sri Chinmoy somewhere in Canada, him being at a session of a debate of who was the REAL avatar of this age i.e. Da Free John vs Meher Baba, him seeing the Dalai Lama & Sam Keen back in the 1990s, etc & I know I am leaving much other stuff out.

    & of course, Gary was just a plain old good fella to know. I just wish I had took him up on his last invitation to see him one last time recently. But now it is too late.

  • A. Ted Poprafsky:

    Thank you for your presence in this physical realm, your energy will always be present in our hearts. Thanks for helping Shekinah glow like the divine being
    she truly is. Thanks for the work you are about to do in the higher dimensions.
    Your smile will always be in my minds eye! My Higher-Self gives you a big HUG!

    Namaste,Espavo,Ja Ta,

  • Cayla Tchalo:

    I knew Gary only thru brief yet wonderful encounters at Interfaith. Yet I am deeply & forever grateful to him for his seminar on Caregivers that he presented at Interfaith on Jan. 16 this year. He helped me understand and heal so much: for the last 2.5 years, I had been taking care of my own partner/husband who had his own courageous & valiant “encounter” with cancer & who passed away on April 22. Gary did not even know me & yet he touched me so deeply because he helped me understand much more about that “journey thru cancer” I had taken w/Jerry. I hope that those who knew him well can find solace in knowing that Gary’s life indeed was one of purpose and Great Good for, as I can attest, he profoundly helped those he did not even know. Peace & solace to all…….

  • Bill Thomson & Charlotte Whitney:

    We will miss your humor and your nurturing assistance to those afflicted with pain and trauma. You have made enormous contributions to our community and our world.

  • Three things come to mind when I think of Gary–gentleness, genuineness, and generosity. His warm, ready embrace spoke welcome, even to strangers. The first night I met Gary at a bonfire birthday party for our friend Alison back in 2001, we talked for hours about teaching, training, music, and relationships. He shared spiritual insights, intimate stories, and sweet music as easily as the clouds release rain. And when he was with Shekinah, they glowed, as if each were a mirror to the flame in the other. We’ll miss you, sweet, gentle, white-haired man. And we’ll do our best to nurture the part of you that lives on in Shekinah, your earthly angel.

  • Bob Dise:

    I knew Gary through our shared labor of love, the New Dimensions Study Group, a project which I got rolling in Ann Arbor in the summer of 1983 and parted from with deep regrets when I left the area to begin my life as a professor in the summer of 1987. Gary, with Tom Lincoln, Tim Wellman, Rebecca Mullen, Steve Modell, and several others, kept the NDSG prospering during those years, and he, with them, gave it life for some time afterwards. I regret that there were no such things back then as the internet and e-mail, because with all the miles between us, I fell out of touch with Gary and those people who meant so much to me, and whose memories still mean so much to me today.

    When Tom and Monte told me of Gary’s passing, the unrecognized sadness of all those years of separation came home to me. The memories of the work we put into the NDSG, and the depth of the friendships that had flourished in the common quest for the depth and richness on which our lives and our universe rest. My fondest memory of Gary comes late in my time in Ann Arbor. I had a long conversation with him in which he helped me to realize how dramatically my life had been transformed, thanks to my often painful but ultimately successful passage through graduate school, and thanks to the presence of that community that the NDSG had become. That realization has guided my life ever since. I know myself much better because of Gary. I hope he knows that.

  • Gwynne and Sasha:

    Dear Shekinah,
    So many fond memories of Gary’s kindness, and caring spirit, and love for you, for music, for beauty, for a good party. Blessings on his journey. Blessings on your journey.
    Peace and love,
    Gwynne and Sasha

  • ken schwall:

    gary and i have been friends since we were 19-years old. we sang together
    in a folk group called “the winston five”…that was after the glory days of “rocky and the continentals”. i’ve ben reading the comments from folks who’ve known him better in recent years and each comment fit the 19-year old gary to a tee. he hadn’t changed a lick. in the years i’ve known him, i can honestly say i never heard him say a negative word about anyone. you can say that about a lot of people..but not “honestly”. our last visit with gary and
    shekinah was here in knoxville where we sang the night away. that’s how i’ll remember gary. strummin’ and singin’ and smilin’!

  • My condolences to Shekinah and Gary’s famly. I have truly enjoyed knowing Gary since the mid 80′s. I was looking forward to spending more time with him this summer because his schedule was settling down. I’m sure he is very busy working through this latest change and it will be a bit before we can commune again.

  • Robert:

    My time knowing Gary was brief, less than a year. Yet he touched me as I know he touched many, with one of the most gentle hearts I’ve ever encountered in a person. One could feel a flowing peace and warmth radiate from him when in his presence. I feel truly blessed to have known him, and though we mourn his passing for many reasons, I know he’ll continue to be a living presence in our lives from a higher perspective. Godspeed Gary, and may we join hands across the divide in times to come. Peace to you my brother, and much love to Shekinah and all your family…

  • Julia Jackson:

    I just got a hug from Gary and Shekinah at an Interfaith event in May. Can’t believe he is gone. Shekinah, my prayers are with you. I’m picturing Gary in a pirate suit at one of your great Halloween parties.

  • Ken Kozora:

    Carry on Gary!

    Crossing paths w/Gary & Shekinah many times over the last number of years, I’ve always felt warmed and humbled by their great loving spirits!

  • Mary:

    Ever since I received word of Gary’s passing from this physical plane I’ve wanted to express my heartfelt gratitude for having been blessed to know this gentle giant of a man. He was always interested in living, music and people. I pray that he will be guided on this next leg of the journey back to source.
    Shekinah, may you be enfolded in the love of others as you walk through this time of loss of your mate and best friend.p;

  • Carol Perrault:

    Though I knew Gary for just a short while, I always felt welcome in his presence. He was such a kind and caring soul, so talented and gifted. Gary, your light will be missed by all of us who knew you. Shekinah, my heart goes out to you. Know that I am here for you. ~ Carol

  • Cynthia C. Reedy:

    What a gentle and loving soul…I felt so honored by Garys authenticity and grace….talking openly about about expansion or jamming at the Joy Rd. Jams. What sensitivity and compassion he offered. Love and blessings to Shekinah and family. NAMASTE.

  • Annie:

    We’ve only had brief encounters with both Gary and Shekinah, but what wonderful spirits…generous, kind and musically gifted. Sending heartfelt wishes of peace to Shekinah and all their family and friends.

  • Sylvia Kay:

    Knowing Heather as a pre-schooler; knowing Chris as a baby; knowing Gary as their father. Then years later meeting Shekinah at work; even later learning that my two friends from my separate pasts–Gary and Shekinah–had found each other. Wow. Music, singing, and joy in so many venues.

    I planned on more fun times, more music, hearing more of what Gary says about stuff–more watching Gary and Shekinah interact with one another in their special way. Count me among the community of those who grieve and lean on each other as we cope, remember Gary, and keep him with us in spirit.

  • Sandra:

    I was thrilled when Gary and Shekinah participated in our annual music party in Chelsea a few years ago. Everyone was awed by their professional presentation and GREAT sound! I’m sure Gary is making music on the other side, but we’re going to miss him here. You are both in my heart and mind.

  • Shekinah, I’m sorry I never had a change to know Gary, but from all you said about him I know he was a wonderful and special person who brought love and light into your life. May the time you had with him comfort and lift you up always.

  • Ayad Jacksi:

    Shekinah I’m sorry about your loss. Gary was a very good man, and a very good customer of mine.I’m sure everyone who knew Gary loved him because of great personalty. I hope God gives you the strength to get through this tough time.

  • The “kids” & I are Just back from a beautiful, healing experience at a lovely retreat center in northwest MI, where we had been invited as guests, and accepted—on Gary’s behalf—a major professional honor from the Michigan Crisis Response Association: “Responder of the Year 2010…in recognition of outstanding contributions to crisis response in the State of Michigan.” The award was presented by president of MCRA, Jim “Benji” VanBendegom. In truth, *all* the years of Gary’s giving & service were lovingly honored–not just for his contributions & commitment to MCRA’s annual conferences and outreach, but also as a skilled trainer in CISM (Critical Incident Stress Management), and his capable leadership and grief-counseling skills in times of crisis in southeastern Michigan, including as the TERN Coordinator (Traumatic Events Response Network). Much of Gary’s professional involvements had continued for him, post-retirement from Washtenaw County (fall 2009). It was a deep honor to meet with Gary’s colleagues—from co-trainers and educators, to EMTs & medical staff, to firefighters, and law-enforcement crisis interventionists, ETC.!—and to learn of the profound impact Gary’s wisdom, efforts, vision, and friendship had had in their work–as well as personal–experiences. Feeling another HUGE dose of Gratitude and Love today for this incredible, multi-faceted man I had the privilege of calling “Beloved Husband,” and the honor & JOY of having co-partnered nearly 7 years of Life with him. I miss you so, Dear Gary. I do so wish I could give you the BIGGEST BEAR HUG of congratulations, and an adoring, heartfelt kiss right now…

  • Shekinah:

    It’s been over six months now since Gary took our breathe away by unexpectedly breathing his last breathe.
    Tomorrow (December 1) is Gary’s birthday. It would’ve been his 64th.
    Yes Gary, still sending you “birthday greetings”…”dropp”ing you “this line”:
    I do “still need” you.
    Yours “Forever More”

    WHEN I’M 64
    Lyrics/Music by Paul McCartney and John Lennon

    When I get older, losing my hair, many years from now
    Will you still be sending me a valentine, birthday greetings, bottle of wine?
    If I’d been out ’til quarter to three, would you lock the door?
    Will you still need me, will you still feed me when I’m sixty-four?

    You’ll be older too
    Ah, and if you say the word, I could stay with you

    I could be handy, mending a fuse when your lights have gone
    You can knit a sweater by the fireside, Sunday mornings, go for a ride
    Doing the garden, digging the weeds, who could ask for more?
    Will you still need me, will you still feed me when I’m sixty-four?

    Every summer we can rent a cottage
    In the Isle of Wight if it’s not too dear
    We shall scrimp and save
    Ah, grandchildren on your knee, Vera, Chuck and Dave

    Send me a postcard, drop me a line stating point of view
    Indicate precisely what you mean to say, yours sincerely wasting away
    Give me your answer, fill in a form, mine forever more
    Will you still need me, will you still feed me when I’m sixty-four?

  • Stephen Modell:

    Gary left us half a year ago, but I remember this good friend as if seeing him just yesterday. I knew Gary from New Dimensions, but actually he was a prismatic character, having both a spiritual and practical bent. Gary revealed the rare character of balance. Two years ago I enjoyed hearing him as a panelist in the School of Public Health “Office of Emergency Preparedness”-sponsored public health grand rounds. Panelists were discussing preparedness in the case of spread of biological agents by terrorists (a bit removed from the early 1980s when I first met Gary).

    Gary’s talk was on how to allocate people to the proper “hot spots” to take care of those under emotional distress. Two forces were operating in what he discussed: – how to best care for the distressed individual; – how to deal with mass dilemma on a community-wide level. His talk was so calm and informative, a welcome assurance given the possibility that many people would be falling ill and dying in these circumstances.

    I did not really think again about Gary and death until his sudden and unexpected passage. Shortly after his funeral, I sent Shekinah an article from “Reform Judaism” that appeared almost targeted to this happening, Gary’s departure. The author of the article was Rabbi Zoe Klein, Senior Rabbi of Temple Isaiah in Los Angeles. She was necrophilic for as long as she could remember – fearful to the point of terror of death. For her not just the fear of the unknown loomed wide, but a “certainty” of impending nothingness. From the article “The Rabbi Who Dreaded Death” (Reform Judaism Summer 2010):

    “My son saw a dead bird the other day and became terribly anxious. I said to him, ‘Death is a part of God’s world. And God’s world is beautiful.’ He nodded, because neither of us doubted that both of these thoughts are true.”

    When seeing purple flowers tumbling over a stone wall, she realized, “Now I understood that in life we are a covenant, and in death we are at One. I am a leaf on the tree of life that will some day rejoin the soil and quench the roots and reintegrate with everything. To die is not to be cast out, but to be invited to enter the very Source of Life, the great and complete embrace. Love.”

    Next to this mention of flowers in her article is a beautiful picture of a tree-lined path on a kibbutz in Northern Israel. Rabbi Klein says they form a “magical gateway”. Gary planted bonsai trees; prior to my seeing this article, a tree was being planted in Israel in honor of Gary through the Jewish National Fund, courtesy of a donation by the International Critical Incident Stress Foundation. To me this act is highly symbolic of Gary:

    • The appearance of natural beauty
    • A tree connecting earth to heaven
    • The overcoming of death through new life
    • Giving
    • Bringing out the best in others (both individually and organizationally)
    • The linking of the practical (forest renewal; a green earth) with the spiritual

    All portray Gary in my fond memory of a dear friend who touched countless people in the most uplifting way, and whose actions have always been part of the goodness of eternity.

  • My dad, Gary Kern, was in the band Two Cents Worth way back in the day. I remember visiting Gary and his family when I was a kid and I am so sorry for your loss.
    Peace, Love and Happiness
    ~Karre Kern
    Betcha they are jamming together again

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