"Hope is faith holding out its hand in the dark."
~ George Iles
Here we are again with another CABB. Today would have
been Charles Rocket's 58th birthday. As stated last year
in CABB 3,
the JABB Yahoogroup voted to do an annual tribute to Charles
Rocket on his birthday each year until JABB concludes.
This year is no different and I hope these reflections enable
you to remember this actor whose work as Adam on TBAA and
other roles brought us a lot of joy and inspiration. If,
after reading these, you feel compelled to write something, I
would be happy to post it here with your permission.
Finally, I hope you will all keep Mr. Rocket's family and
friends in your prayers.
Thank you and God bless,
When I saw August 24th was quickly approaching again, I got to
thinking about what my contribution for this year would be.
I had every intention about writing of a very special gift that I
feel exists only because of Mr. Rocket. That would be my
Dad's and my turkey-watching ritual. I've said before that
these past couple years turkeys have overrun our area. This
last spring was no exception. And so near daily my dad and I
would scope them out on our way to work. It was really our
only shared activity just between the two of us. And that's
the gift I'm grateful for. Adam made me actually care about
turkeys and when Mr. Rocket died, they became a symbol of hope for
me. They were a reminder of happy times. By seeking
them out, I was able to bond with my father and that's been a
So that was all
I planned to write and surely it's no small thing. However,
recent events have made me want to say more. As I've often
stated recently, I'm in the midst of moving. That is, I have
moved but painting and cleaning and moving things from my parents'
to my house have been near-constant activities. This, and
probly an always quiet house, has given me a lot of time to
think. I've been surprised how often I've thought of those
who have gone before me into Heaven. It's been far more
often than I usually have before. It's been both a blessing
and sad. Just now as I was working in my bedroom, arranging
TBAA products, I came across my yarn angels. Four are very
simple, holding either flowers or doves. But then there's
the gray one holding the very bright turkey. It's the one I
made in the days after Mr. Rocket's death made the papers. I
sent them out with a card reading:
"In Memory of Charles Rocket: 'Our Adam' In 'An Unexpected
Snow,' Adam taught us that there's value in every life, even a
turkey's. May 'Adam' and 'Alexander' here remind you of this
truth and of the wonderful man who brought Adam (and his sense of
humor) into our lives."
I offered the angels to any JABBer on list at the time. What
I didn't say was that working on them made me terribly sad.
I usually love crafting but this... it felt like a task I
shouldn't even be doing. I wanted to do something to honor
Charles Rocket and so I pushed through and completed the 6 or so
that were requested. I shipped them off and put my own on a
shelf. The days went by and every day I stared at that angel
as I got ready for work and the sadness crept in. Finally, I
couldn't take it any more and put it away in a drawer with the
memorial card. Eventually (and I don't remember how much
time passed), I did take it back out and put it with my other TBAA
stuff where it had remained since.
Just today I was faced with deciding where it would go in my new
home. I realized that the pain and grief I'd felt when
making the little guy was no longer there. In fact, I smiled
when I saw him in the hastily packed box. I took him out and
arranged him with his yarn angel buddies. But what I was
doing didn't seem quite right. Finally, I ended up centering
'Adam' and 'Alexander' in the front of the area. Just right!
And so I hope the memory of Charles Rocket is always obvious to
us. I hope we allow ourselves to feel all the emotions that
brings up. But mostly I hope we all come to a place of
happiness and that his memory will inspire us to look at life in a
light-hearted way and to share with others God's love for them
just as Mr. Rocket did as Adam.
I have always believed that hope was a
special thing. It maintains our vibrancy for life, and gives
us something that, over time, rejuvenates, restores and
revitalizes our spirits. That is something that Adam did and
as I look back and remember the various things that Charles Rocket
contributed to this world, it saddens me to reflect that he could
not feel the impact of what he was doing for us. I believe
wholeheartedly, that today he knows.
The character of Adam was probably one of
the most memorable for me. During this time when I remember
Charles Rocket and how he portrayed the angel, I find myself also
reflecting on those other roles he had where he made the virtual
circle close by playing an antagonist and giving the hero someone
credible to defeat. Whether he was Ted in ‘Earth Girls Are
Easy’, or a Russian in ‘King of Queens’ or playing in ‘Lois and
Clark’, he will always be remembered as Adam to me. He will
always carry a sense of goodness and nobility in this
legacy. I am grateful to Charles Rocket for that.
when I was a little girl and how I always looked to famous
people for a father figure. I cannot explain why, or
perhaps I can because my father left when I was 12. I
looked far and wide for someone to take that role of a father
for me. When I got married I found my father figure in my
husband’s father, but as a young person, people like Charles
Rocket were very much the
kind of people that I aspired to have around me. They were
the ones I wished could have been there to celebrate the
successes in my life, and pick me up when I reached a trench.
When I was 24, I watched Adam pick up and
carry a child named Serena to Heaven. I felt such a rush of
love for the character that I could not deny my bond and
connection to him. It is probably one of the most poignant
images that I could possibly have. The comfort and loving
assurances were something that I would never forget.
So, as we acknowledge the work and the
legacy of Charles Rocket, I remember that image of him carrying
that child to God, and I will never forget that he is being held
in the same arms of love that he so often spoke of on ‘Touched By
The first time I
saw Charles Rocket in anything was in the first season of
TBAA. His smile seemed to be so friendly and warming,
like you were a friend he hadn't seen in a long time.
His demeanor seemed that of a big brother always there when
you needed someone to talk to or to have fun with no matter
the time of day or night.
I'd like to
eventually see more of what he has done but for the
meantime, I'll just remember that smile and think of how he
gave us hope even during his dark time.
Take care, my
Suicide Prevention Information
A more complete collection of
suicide prevention information can be found on CABB 3,
with some thoughts from JABB members. However, this time
around I just wanted to present a more concise listing of
resources. The following are mostly U.S.-based
sites. Thank you!
(Photo Credits: The photographs used on this page are from "Touched
by an Angel" and owned by CBS Productions, Caroline Productions, and
Moon Water Productions. They are not being used to seek