4.3.20

On the Passing of a Friend and Mentor: Frank Levy, Storyteller

Francis Xavier Levy, Jr. passed away on Tuesday morning - Frank was a friend and a mentor to me. I’ll miss him terribly. I met him and his wife Bonnie when I was a volunteer page at the Mandeville branch of the Saint Tammany Parish Library. I was a teenager. I shelved books. But when Frank would visit the library, he and Bonnie enlisted me in their Stories in Motion program - I’ll never forget Flutterby the Butterfly (played fabulously by Bonnie Bess Wood). We even made the pages of the Saint Tammany edition of the New Orleans newspaper The Times-Picayune (My mom saved the clipping). I was the lepidopterist. That was about twenty-seven years ago (if I did the math correctly). I'll never forget Frank. He was (and is) a tour de force. Here are several things I learned from Frank Levy: 
  1. A great movie is a work of literature.
  2. Wal-Mart is better at 3 AM.
  3. Calculate the seconds it takes your local traffic light to turn red (and use this knowledge to help you know when to leave your house during rush hours).
  4. Sappho is awesome.
  5. Every kid can have a starring role.
  6. Back in 1992, Frank was already using the World Wide Web - and he taught himself HTML. I’ll never forget learning how to browse the web from him.
  7. Read. READ. Read.
  8. Stay quiet backstage.
  9. But own your lines on stage.
  10. Stage combat!
  11. Homemade beef jerky (DM me for the recipe).
  12. Talk to strangers. If they appear friendly. And invite them to dinner.
  13. Ask, and people might give you what you want.
  14. Frank was the lonely kid growing up. But as an adult, he dedicated his life to making kids happy.
  15. Your past doesn’t define you.
I’m sure I’ll think of more after I click “share now.” If you knew Frank Levy, please add to my list.
A snapshot of Mr. Frank Levy and his wife Bonnie Bess Wood.
Frank and his wife Bonnie

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