“Junior” - as his family nicknamed him since he bore the same name as his father – was a big guy. He reminded me of a big 'ole bear. He even lumbered around most of the time like a bear. And that appearance often carried into his personality. Junior often seemed uninterested in most things until he found a topic he liked such as photography. When he learned that I was studying to be a photojournalist, his demeanor would change from uninterested to engaging. Like a bear finding the honey from a beehive. We talked a lot about photography and shared ideas or points of view. We'd also talk about camera equipment, photographic techniques or about famous photographers. It didn't matter to him. He loved talking about photography as much I as did.
It was during these conversations with Junior that often lead me to my other fond memory of him: his laughter. A man his size could not possess a small, quiet laugh. No way. His laughter was as big as he was. The volume of his laughter boomed like thunder and everyone in the house could tell who the laughter originated. And it was often at the end of our chats where Junior would reveal a loud, echoing “Ha!Ha!” His laugh always seemed like the perfect ending to a story.
And so this is how I choose to remember Junior picturing him laughing loudly from the heavens.