You don't have to know someone 5 or 10 or even 20 years to consider then a friend. Sometimes all it takes is a few encounters. Here's a story of one such friend who one day i was asking a huge favor from to the summer day i was drenched in sweat and he spied me inside the Orleans Post Office and despite my warning that i was dripping in sweat he gave me a bear hug like it was no big deal.
The world lost an extremely talented actor today. The world also lost a very, very kind and gentle person. Most know Gavin MacLeod for his many roles through the years. Captain Stubing on The Love Boat, Murray on The Mary Tyler Moore Show among a zillion other roles and appearances on stage and screen but when we spoke I always went back to his role of Happy on McHale's Navy - the first time i brought it up he told me that no one ever mentioned it and he went on to praise each and every castmate.
Back in 1995 when Lynn & I were at the helm of the Cape League Team The Orleans Cardinals while i was doing the booth announcing i was told that Gavin, who had a place in my town of Eastham, was in the crowd. Right away I made contact through a family member and boom i was sitting with him on the hill watching the game with his family. He was every nice character he ever portrayed all in one. We chatted about our careers and the team and i asked if he would like to toss out a first pitch in a big game against Chatham. He agreed and when that happened the ballpark was packed and the Love Boat Theme was cranking and he did a great job.
We would run into each other a few times later including the sweaty hug at the post office. It was then i knew that friends have no time limit just great times.
RIP Gavin MacLeod. You'll always be missed.