Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Steve Gluckman - Rest In Peace

Steve Gluckman passed away last night - doing what he did best- being involved. While he was at the the Old Seminole Heights annual dessert event at one of the Old Seminole Heights beautiful bungalows, he apparently had a heart attack.

Steve was a longtime fixture in Old Seminole Heights and active in Old Seminole Heights Neighborhood Association for many years. I can't remember how I met Steve but as he was involved in many activities, there were many opportunities. He was involved in the Friends of the Seminole Heights Library books sale every year, had a database of Burgert Brothers photos of Seminole Heights he was categorizing, he organized the art event at the OSHA Home Tour. He was one of the earliest Old Seminole Heights members to start attending the porch parties in SE Seminole Heights. While googling him I discovered this summer he was directing a USF applied anthropology graduate student research project in Old Seminole Heights. Steve was actually Dr. Steve Gluckman, as he had a PhD. in archeology.

This below was sent out by OSHNA via email

Stephen Gluckman

Dr. Stephen J. Gluckman
December 6, 1937 -
December 11, 2007

Esteemed Board Member
1988 - 2007
~ Old Seminole Heights Neighborhood Association ~

In Memorium

It is with deep sadness that we inform you of the unexpected
death of Dr. Stephen J. Gluckman on Tuesday, December 11, 2007.
A memorial service will be held on Saturday, December 15, 2007,
at 10:00AM at the Seminole Garden Center, 5810 N. Central Avenue.
When a special friend becomes a memory,
the memory becomes a treasure.

The Board of Directors of the Old Seminole Heights Neighborhood Association

Other bloggers are sharing their memories; Tommy with (Steve Gluckman)
and carasu with (Neighborhood In Mourning) .

Something needs to be named for Steve. The building at the Garden Center perhaps?

Share your memories of Steve with the rest of us..


Michelle said...

He will be very sadly missed. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family.
Michelle and Greg Baker

DameDog said...

Steve never stopped coming up with ideas to make the neighborhood better. He was a tireless supporter of the arts, attending openings and events throughout Tampa and encouraging art happenings in seminole Heights. The neighborhood won't be the same without him.

Michelle Cookson said...

So saddened to hear of this happening from a good mutual friend this a.m.

As someone who came here over a decade ago, bought a "crack shack" in desperate need of loving care, and ignored the "well meaning" snobs at the corporate office who exclaimed, "You moved to THAT neighborhood?!?" as they scrunched up their noses at me, meeting Steve was such a positive thing for me.

He encouraged my passion and interest in saving my home, and in historic preservation in general. He encouraged me to contribute all I could, wherever I could- so I got involved in my neighborhood association; and I went on to pursue historic preservation efforts citywide, and learned how persistent interaction with our elected officials DID positively influence them to listen to their constituents.

He encouraged unity and was saddened by the silly snobbery that flitted through the neighborhood- with folks feeling some sort of need to declare any geographic acronym (OSH, SE, SOSH) more important than any other.

I agreed with him- it's ALL Seminole Heights, it's all historic, and it ALL matters! We were of the mind that the disastrous choices of the past (ramming an interstate highway through the heart of a strong community) were not going to hold us back going forward.


He GOT it. He cared. He was passionate about the combination of people caring for a neighborhood while working to save our architectural heritage. Steve knew how it was more than just old wooden structures, or some sad misplaced sense of having the prettiest old house (or the "better" address)- it was about community.

You may not have always agreed with him- that was cool. You didn't have to. The fact that you were caring enough to engage, to converse, to think of things in a different way, that was enough.

Steve was there, involved in every aspect and every event that affected our neighborhood. I was grateful for his presence and assistance when Janet Stanley and I gathered up a rag-tag bunch of "busy bodies" (as we were referred to) and watched our efforts rapidly grow into "Save Our Tower" (THANK YOU Friends of the River!)

Anyone enjoy attending FL Orchestra concerts in the new River Tower Park? Your neighbors spearheaded that effort, and brought the rest of Tampa with them.

This is only a small testament to a legacy that will continue on, for all our neighbors, for all the beautiful little kids I see joining our neighborhood every day.

THANKS Steve- for EVERYTHING. I am glad I knew you.
Michelle Cookson Geisler

carasu said...

I think naming the garden center building after Steve is a wonderful idea.....can it be done? How can it be accomplished?

Seminole said...

He was a man of many talents. I wish I had known him longer. My thoughts and prayers go to his family and the friends who knew him best.

alivinghominid said...

a sad loss

just a few simple corrections (which are not meant to detract from the person but to add to the detail) -

1. his PhD was in anthropology but his specialty was applied archaeology (a branch of anthropology)

2. archaeology is usually spelled with the "ae" dipthong

Dirk Peters said...

A few words about a friend …

After purchasing my first building in Seminole Heights at the corner of Central & Hanna in Seminole Heights in 1991, I had the pleasure of meeting Steve Gluckman. My purchase of the building was to relocate my photography studios… Steve had been making photos for many years, so this is were Steve & I ‘s friendship began, I staring showing up to Steve’s Friday art gatherings, in the mid-90’s to about 2002 we salvaged many houses in Tampa for wood flooring, windows, doors, etc. Since that then we shared lunch probably 40 times a year, say 600+ lunches …. conversation of neighborhoods, historic preservation, politics, the 9-11 attacks, the War, education, finances, the economy, taxes, religion, the internet, medicine, music, food, women & rare occasions we would discuss how to be a great parent and raise wonderful children ….. Funny Thing is neither one of us had any children. I’m sure we did this to help our friend Bill Duvall. However, Bill should rest comfortably knowing Steve did his homework & read about it in a book!

Steve has a knack for floating ideas, view points that seemed on the surface unique and / or sometimes bazaar --- however when it came right down to it Steve was challenging you to think about the entire issue and perhaps from a different vantage point than the one you started with . Steve was still being a Professor ……….. Minus the classroom.

Steve had a thirst for knowledge which I greatly admired about him. Last week he called to ask for my help with a new digital camera he had received as a birthday gift. I gave Steve a few pointers about the camera and explained that it would take a while to understand the camera, its controls and that digital imaging sees and records light different than film. And, then I did what any good Teacher or Professor would do – I told Steve go home and read his camera manual. This week Steve informed me of his internet tutorials for his new I-Pod his brother Jeremy given him for his 70th birthday. Steve was excided about being able to download photos to the I-Pod. I responded by saying he just wanted to show off his etchings to all the ladies.

Steve we want to say a few words about the neighborhood and the neighborhood association in which he was so committed too. In last couple of years he was deeply bothered about the lack of transparency regarding many issues! Steve felt that communication had been missing and issues being decided by too few people or decided prior to a board meeting. Steve wasn’t upset by the outcome of the issues or being on the losing end of an issue, but by the process. Steve was always true to his thoughts several years ago I rezoned my properties at Central & Hanna Avenue’s. Steve was not in support of my rezoning.

Steve and I also had many conversations regarding his family ….. His family was in the agricultural business (citrus groves)….. There was a hotel in Miami, etc. During many of these conversations he referred to his brother Jeremy, who practices law here in Tampa. During the sixteen years of conversations Jeremy’s name came up many, many times.

Let me preference this next story by saying I used to tell Steve he was the smartest person, I knew! I once made this statement at lunch with others and I could tell it made Steve very uncomfortably ….. Steve felt any of us could be smarter by educating ourselves, reading (ie doing our homework!) However, from time to time between Steve & myself, I would still refer to him as the Smartest Person I Knew!

Early this year I had a need for some legal counsel, so I called Jeremy . After hearing his name so many times, I had this mental picture of him ! MY picture of Jeremy was as Follows: a gentleman about 6’2” – 6” 3”, dark hair, wire rim glasses and very intelligent like Steve. Upon arriving at his office I was escorted to the conference room. A few short minutes later Mr. Jeremy Gluckman arrived ……… my visions were off a bit! !
You see Jeremy looked like Steve’s twin to me ……. Jeremy is younger and is slimmer . About 5 minutes into the legal issues … I realized I was listening to one of the brightest, most articulate people I had ever met. So I interrupted Jeremy and asked the following question … are all you Gluckmans so intelligent …… Jeremy responded by saying that they came from good stock! And, with a big smile on his face Jeremy was quick to point out that by far he was the “Brightest of ALL the Gluckmans”.

After I left Jeremy’s office, I picked Steve up for our scheduled lunch ….. as soon as Steve opened the door to my truck I said “ I finally met someone smarter than You”, Steve chucked and said O’ Yeah …… I said the gentleman was extremely bright, intelligent, well educated, well read and had a wonderful command of the English language. I informed Steve that I told this person that I knew Dr. Steve Gluckman. And, that this individual even went so far as say “… He was smarter than Steve Gluckman” ….. Steve still had no idea who I was speaking of, because I had not informed Steve of my meeting with Jeremy. So then, I informed him that I had just spent a couple of hours with Dr. Jeremy Gluckman ….. Steve got a kick out of that ….. Several blocks down the road , my thoughts were on the driving …..Steve said you know “ He Probably Is “ I said “ He Probably is” ??
“What “??? Jeremy is probably smarter ! We both had A big laugh !

In the 16 years I’ve known Steve Gluckman, I have never heard Steve speak ill or ugly about anyone …… there would be times I or someone else might say something about someone and Steve would always say something to either cover for that person or tell me I needed to take a different approach,
So that I would get the result I was looking for …. I used to think he was just being politically correct ….. however after 16 years !

Steve and I have had several conversations regarding dying and dying with dignity …. Steve was very concerned about a prolonged illness and becoming a burden upon his family! Steve’s passing was a shock to all of us….. However, I did find some solitude (this past week) knowing Steve didn’t have to suffer through a prolonged illness.

Steve & I shared many conversations, thoughts, ideas and laughs. We broke bread together, and judging by my waistline probably a few too many times !

“ The Doctor ” or “ Stevie G “ as I sometimes referred to him as .. made my life better !

Steve Gluckman was A Great Friend

We could all use a few more Steve’s in our lives!

Dirk Peters

YesterDazed said...

Dirk, that was wonderful, thanks for sharing your memories of Steve!

Michelle Cookson said...

DITTO to what Sherry said!

Dirk, thank you so much for sharing so much of a long friendship. What a difficult task in a way ~ to attempt to capture a lifetime of memories, pull out the gems, and encapsulate a person. To use this flat construct of words, and paint a three-dimensional picture of an individual and their unique self and sprit. WOW! ~ what a great post! REALLY captures Steve. what a beautiful, authentic note to a friend!

I really appreciated reading it. (forwarded to some mutual acquaintances from the "old days", in case they didn't see it here)

Thanks. For a moment, Steve was back here.

Oh wait- your stories are a window into something that is always with us... in every brick, every piece of siding (which my poor mind can't help but instantly identify- "Oh look! Ship lap! ha- another Steve imprint!)... in the wind as it gently blows through majestic oaks, stretching over us, leaning in to engulf our community in a timeless, green embrace.

There is comfort, security and peace in seeing Steve everywhere ~ a very cool legacy, indeed.

Some professors are the special ones that teach and touch lives, long after they have finished the course.
Michelle Cookson