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December 2021

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lion in winter dead

Forrest J. Ackerman dies.

from snurri, the AP reports that paleofan Forrie Ackerman has died, aged 92.

I never met the man myself, but he makes a Tuckerized appearance in my favorite Man From UNCLE novelization, which also contains a shout-out to The Unstrung Harp. A coincidence which I have no doubt pleased him enormously.

Comments

My husband and I were guest liaisons for 4E when he was in Iowa in 1998. He was a kind old gentleman. He will be missed.

Catherine
I met him once in the early 80s at the Atlanta Fantasy Fair convention (#13? I forget. 1982-84 range.) Nice guy, astonishingly enthusiastic about absolutely everything.
I had the pleasure and privilege of a tour of the Ackermansion by the man himself many years ago. A perfect gentleman and a delightful raconteur. I am saddened to hear of his death but I know he had a good life, the way he wanted it to be every day and that is a fine achievement.
I also had the pleasure of a tour through his house when I was trying to get the rights to an A.E. Van Vogt book. He was really nice and encouraging to this stranger and showed me many wonderful treasures.
I met him briefly when he was Fan GOH at Arisia. He was charming, and managed to admire my ass in a way that made it seem a gallantry rather than an imposition. Rest in peace, Forry.
I got to meet him at Baycon the year of his 80th birthday, he was lovely. I never did make it to the Ackermansion, but I would have liked to.

After the false alarm last month I took the opportunity to send him a thank-you note and birthday card, and I'm very glad I had the chance.
The end of an era. He will be missed.

   when first i saw "Judson" in "The Librarian: Quest for the Spear", i immediately thought 'Forrey Ackerman'... all i'd ever heard of the man proclaimed him "Dedicated Defender of the Artifacts and Vigilant Keeper of the Memorabilia'...
   never had the privilege (or i'm told, the pleasure) of meeting the man personally but i long ago learned to gauge the merit of a person by the hole left by that person's passing...
   by all accounts, mostly of folks with whom i have actually broken bread, Forrest J Ackerman leaves a Tunguska-sized hole in the world.
   i sorrow for those who have such a hole in their own, personal worlds...

Obit

I met him at the Worldcon in Brighton in 1979; he was carefully explaining the origins of the various rings, necklaces etc. about his person to an enrapt audience. He was a true great. His appearance in that MFU book made me smile, since it seemed perfectly in character.
Long ago I toured the Ackermansion. I was with a fellow art student who was working on a painting of Isaac Asimov and asked Mr. Ackerman what color his eyes were and he called up Arthur C. Clarke and asked (or was it visa versa?--it was a LONG time ago!). Was definitely a thrill for my friend, who went back several more times...
I remember a passage from some Ray Bradbury story, set firmly in October Country even if that wasn't the specific book, in which a young boy is trying to console another over their inevitable mortality: "Once we're dead, we'll be *part of it all*; dead people are what Halloween is all *about*!"

The thought seemed apropos.

(I also never did get to serve Fritz Leiber a recreation of the Black Feast from "Bazaar of the Bizarre", dangit.)