Monday, September 26, 2016

Akron and her former BJ co-workers paid their final tribute to Connie Bloom on Sunday at Summit ArtSpace, in her third-floor studio and the adjoining open space.

Hundreds came for the “party” that Connie wanted, including husband Bob Shields.

So did those who shared Ol’ Blue Walls with Connie, who went from BJ Features editor and pet columnist to one of Ohio’s premier fabric art (quilts) gurus.

Former BJ arts and culture critic Elaine Guregian, who left 44 E. Exchange Street to do  PR work among medical professionals; former BJ artist Chuck Ayers of “Crankshaft” comics fame; former BJ art department chief Art Krummel; his wife, former BJ reporter Charlene Nevada; former BJ businee reporter Mary Ethridge; BJ photographer Lew Stamp, taking photos of everyone in sight at the love-in for Connie, including his former co-workers; former BJ business writer Gloria Irwin; former BJ photographer Lew Henderson; and former BJ assistant State Desk Editor/Newsroom Electronics Coordinator/TV Editor John Olesky, who spent nearly two decades two desks away from Connie in the BJ Features Department, who purchased one of her masterpieces so that he can feel Connie’s spirit in his Tallmadge home for the rest of his life.

Moustache Yourself, the band that Connie selected, played respectfully as Connie’s town gathered in her honor.

As per Connie’s instructions, all of the proceeds from the sale of her fabric art work went to benefit Artists of Rubber City and Summit ArtSpace.

Now Connie rests for the ages, with Action Line’s unique Craig Wilson already preceding her into the Great Beyond. She began in 1973 under Craig’s tutelage, and blossomed into a fine editor and a finer person.

Farewell, Connie. We’ll all join you some day.

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