Monday, April 27, 2009

Tim Holst Celebration for those that couldn't make it, a personalized recap

I went to Sarasota on Sunday to share memories of the life of Tim Holst. For those of you unable to make it, here is my recollection. Circus family is unlike any other I know of. I always feel honored to be a part of it. Thank you to everyone that put this together and spoke on his behalf for all of us. Our condolences to his family. He will be greatly missed.

A Celebration of Life

Keith Greene, Kenny Cubicciotti and Dave Holmes - Played heartfelt music in Tim's honor. Keith later said it was the toughest show he'd ever played. Thank you Keith and band, for live music played so touchingly.

Welcome and Invocation
David Kiser
As David welcomed me at the door I glanced over his shoulder as we hugged. There, on a screen, was a slide show of Tim. After having tended to my mundane life's needs and a 3 hour drive, the reality of this gathering suddenly hit me. I was thankful I had a shoulder to cry on. Thank you David Kiser for that and being brave enough to stand before us and tell those stories barely holding it together so the rest of us could let go. You have some mighty big shoes to fill, I wish you well. In the spirit of Tim, let me know if there's ever anything I can do to help.

Adrienne Holst - Stepped up to the podium with her bursting file of papers remarking that she was following in Tim's footsteps. Her voice cracked as she spoke eloquently of her father. Many remarked how much she bore his resemblance.
Sad she lost her father at such a young age as she related that she was just beginning to understand him.

Kenneth Feld - Told light-hearted stories of Tim the friend, associate, business partner and fellow adventurer as they worked and traveled together for over 30 odd years. Some of them odder than others. From the 8-fingered alligator trainer to first-ever bowling in China, I would imagine Kenneth will miss Tim more than most. The stories he told were entertaining and painted a vivid picture of Tim, his unique idiosyncrasies and droll sense of humor in any situation.

A short video was shown of clips of Tim ringmastering and interacting in his unique way. My favorite was the bit at the end where he was explaining "weigh day" and "pay day" to us dancers. A delicate and oft times disturbing weekly ritual for some, Tim handled it with aplomb and a much needed sense of humor.

Remembering Tim

Billy Powell - Read the following poem:

"The circus is a jealous wench. Indeed that is an understatement. She is a ravening hag who sucks your vitality as a vampire drinks blood – who kills the brightest stars in her crown and will allow no private life for those who serve her; wrecking their homes, ruining their bodies, and destroying the happiness of their loved ones by her insatiable demands. She is all of these things, and yet, I love her as I love nothing else on earth."
Henry Ringling North

and then examined the "why" of what we do.

Jim Ragona - Told of the honor he felt carrying Tim's luggage and his adventures in retrieving Zusha the Blood Sweating Nile Hippo from Russia under Tim's guidance.

Steve Smith - Couldn't speak up fast enough in clown alley when an understudy for the Ringmaster was asked for. Tim did pipe up in his baritone voice and got the chance. Steve and Tim went on to have a lifelong friendship.

Peggy Williams - Related Tim's invitation to adventure on Kaleidoscape which upon arrival turned out to be "Doniker Designer"

Emails received from around the world were read, each shedding light on the immense number of people Tim, and in turn the circus, had touched worldwide.

The Lords Prayer
Johnathan Lee Iverson sang sending chills through me.

Afterwards light snacks were served and jackpots cut up. Sadly many of us only see each other at these occasions. Happier moments need to be shared. I've never seen so many well-dressed clowns behaving themselves. Such was the effect of the "inTimidator" as I fondly referred to him. He said himself in his resume his 'job' was to make everyone on the circus 'happy.' Tough job indeed. Thank you, Mr. Tim.


Anonymous said...

Beautiful. well done. Well remembered.

Linda Holst said...

Thank you so much for the lovely report. The program was so satisfying and rich with memories. The family (my children and I, Tim's sister and brother and family), appreciates the sympathies extended by everyone who attended and those who weren't able to come. Following the program, a viewing was held early evening at Farley Funeral Home in Venice, FL. Today was the funeral and burial. The funeral service was at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints (LDS)with family and close friends. The service was lovely. Tim's new home is near his friends Gunther Gebel Williams, Micky Antalek, Charlie Smith and other circus folks who have passed on.
Linda Holst

Anonymous said...

I will always remember his kindness from way back when I was just a kid and he was a clown.Till now 2009,when he put a good word in for me which landed me back on the greatest show on earth.LOVED & MISSED -- RIP--

Anonymous said...

Thanks Lynne. Carolyn

Lynn said...

You're welcome all. Circus family is forever you know? Appreciate your feedback.

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