I had a lump in my throat last Saturday afternoon as a hearse carrying the body of our late Mayor, Bob Crowell, pulled up in front of City Hall to begin a simple but moving naval “bell ceremony” in his honor. It was the right way to remember a retired U.S. Navy captain, an officer and a gentleman who lived up to our shared military ideals: Duty. Honor. Country.
Mayor Bob and I were friends ever since he took over at City Hall 12 years ago. We had shared values due to our military service, although he was a career naval officer who served in Vietnam while I flew for the Air Force between wars. Nevertheless, both of us believed in honoring our flag, standing for our National Anthem and serving our country. Dedicated to public service, he served his country and his city for most of his adult life, and that’s his proud legacy. I’ll always have a vision of Mayor Bob in his Navy dress uniform at public events in his beloved hometown. He would have loved his memorial service.
As fellow prostate cancer survivors, we kept track of each other’s PSA scores. Mayor Bob was very interested in the proton beam radiation treatments I received at the Loma Linda University Medical Center about 10 years ago and he accompanied me to a local Loma Linda cancer patients’ reunion in Minden a few years ago.
Here’s the kind of person that Mayor Bob was: My Mexican niece, Griselda, visited Carson two or three years ago and we bumped into the mayor downtown. He talked to her like a long lost relative; she was thrilled and I was duly grateful and impressed. Earlier, two Peruvian friends, Eduardo and Graciela “Gachy” Bedoya, visited me here in Carson. Eduardo is a