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In Memoriam


Over the years we lost several players. We still miss them and honor them by remembering the best about them here.

Dorothy Cook was a faithful member of our club for a number of years. She was a retired proofreader for the Fort Worth Star-Telegram who, when she first came to club, insisted that she would never play ET because she objected to its being in our dictionary. We chuckled to ourselves and said to each other, "Just wait till she has a bingo and needs that word to be good in order to play it." Of course that is what happened and soon it was as common and acceptable to her as it was to the rest of us. Dorothy was famous for her fudge and deviled eggs, and we came to believe we knew her sons Mason and Jeff as we listened to her share the news about them. Jeff, a doctor on the East Coast, became a tournament Scrabble® player, too.

Jessica Kubo was only 21 when she passed away, apparently drowning during an epileptic seizure in the bathtub. Her epilepsy was not well-controlled, but her mother was comfortable with her in club as Mary had a brother with epilepsy and familiar with dealing with seizures. There was absolute, sheer delight when Jessica would win a game against a more experienced opponent, and she has been known to dance a little jig around the table in her delight. She was deliciously proud of her little green VW bug.  Jessica definitely marched to the beat of her own drummer and we enjoyed her youth and adventuresome nature.

Lena Norman first found out about Scrabble® club when she attended a six-week adult education Scrabble®class at TCU where Mary was invited to be a guest speaker one night. Although intrigued, she waited 7 years to attend a club meeting--until she retired. Lena was a person of many interests. She painted beautifully, quilted, wrote poetry, and even though she was a senior citizen, she became excited about the things she could do with her computer, such as make transfers of grandchildren to iron onto her quilts and such. She was an excellent seamstress and gardener, too. Several of us were the recipients of veggies she had in more abundance than she wanted. When she came down with pancreatic cancer, she managed to squeeze over another year into her life. She became unable, finally, to attend club, but several of her friends planned a get-together at her house. Her family was excited and appreciative and provided a delicious buffet for them. Of course, Scrabble® was the game of the day.


Mark Palumbo will never be forgotten for his amazing exuberance and Dallas Cowboys obsession, which exhibited itself in his pickup, his clothing, and finally a Cowboys tattoo on his arm. Linda Villarreal and Dorothy Cook kept him supplied with deviled eggs at our tournaments. The most memorable night in club was when Mary decided to take a chance on opening up a triple line at club, deciding that the chances that Mark would need an F in that position were slim. First, Mark leaped up and danced around the room. That was not a good sign. Then he came back and played PONTIFFS for 194 points! The triple-triple was not altogether unusual in club, but the preparatory celebration was! When he was not able to come to club any more, he mentioned to Mary in a phone call that "there can never be too much chocolate". We took that thought and ran with it. Word went out to the Metroplex players that we were having a chocolate shower for him. There was a wonderful pile of all kinds of chocolates and amazingly, not a duplicate in the pile! By that time, Mark had been moved by his parents to a hospice in Houston where they lived and the chocolate was delivered to him there. He called Mary and said, "How did you know I love chocolate?" She reminded him of what he had told her, and he laughed and said, "This might be too much." He shared it with other patients, we are sure. Mark passed away long before we were willing to let him go.

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