As everyone who reads KezarLife knows, I spent a good chunk of my life living and working in Baltimore. During that time I had the great fortune of getting to know some wonderful people. Time and distance tend to eliminate most of them but there are always a few people where the relationship strengthens, even without regular contact. Just a random reading or observation may trigger a pleasant reminder of an old friend.
While working in the mortgage industry in the early 90's, I met Chuck Nossick. We worked for the same company but in different offices and over time we became friends. I took pleasure in convincing him that there was value in visiting downtown Baltimore and having lunch at the Lexington or Cross Street Markets. He returned the favor by inviting me to play golf with him regularly even though my game didn't warrant it.
In Maryland, college lacrosse is as big as professional baseball. Going to sporting events with Chuck, whether it be the Terps or the Orioles, was always exciting. It wasn't a big deal to travel to Philadelphia to see Maryland play Temple on a Sunday afternoon or to Charlottesville to see the Terps play UVA on a Saturday night.
There was a two-year period when Rondi, Ben and Anna had already moved to Lovell and I was still shuttling back and forth while we tried to sell the house. Chuck and his wife Kathleen were always generous with dinner invitations at their Severna Park house.
In March 2000, Chuck's close childhood friend purchased the Baltimore Ravens. Chuck then set out to orchestrate the classiest tailgate party for each home game. On the Ravens' march to the Super Bowl that season, Chuck and I flew out to Oakland for the championship game. And while our son Ben was stationed in Afghanistan, Chuck made sure to give me all the detailed game programs and media handouts which I shipped to Ben on a regular basis. To someone sitting alone in a strange and hostile desert, it was a welcomed touch of home.
It's never good news when my friend David Jones calls me early in the morning, as he did this past Wednesday. Bad news he said. A drunk driver ran a red light and Chuck was the unfortunate victim as he was driving home from work. I still cannot shake the deep numbness.
Chuck was an extremely special person to me and I know, countless others. I feel blessed to have had him as a friend. I truly hope that that each of you are equally blessed to have a 'Chuck Nossick' in your life.
From the Annapolis Capital Gazette: