"Hope is faith holding out its hand in the dark."
~ George Iles

Hi all,

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,

From Jenni:
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 great gift.

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.

God bless,

From Yvette:
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.

I remember 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 An Angel’.

Yvette Jessen
From Liz:
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 friend.


Suicide Prevention Information

Please read before contacting me with requests to add links to this page.

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!

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
Yellow Ribbon Program
Worldwide Suicide Crisis Hotlines
Samaritans (UK)
Lebe dein Leben (German)
Lundbeck (German)

Thank you, Charles Rocket!!!

JABB 227

(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 profit.)