Fellow Adventurer

Anthony David Green 7-31-1950 — 10-9-2016

dscn0022I knew Tony Green under many names, his given name as well as all of his adventuring names from the thousands of hours of roleplaying we did together:

Brutè- Fighter, D&D (Todd’s World)
Skafloc – Magic User, D&D (Todd’s World)
Marluk/Lukram – Magic User, D&D
Alizarin Crimson -Fighter/Magic User, D&D
Kiowa – Aftermath
Jake – Daredevils
Allodar Elventine – Elf Mage, Middle Earth Roleplaying System
Dunravan Shardlow AKA Ravan – Wolf Shaman, Shadowrun
E’rol Flynn – T’skrang Swordmaster, Earthdawn
Sundance – Armed Rock ’n Roller/Psionic Starship Captain, WARPS
Sundance – Serenity
Anthony Marluk – Detective/Wizard, WARPS

(Thanks to Bill Lenox, our erstwhile Dungeon Master for this list)

dscf0253

Here’s most of ‘Deathspite‘ our gaming group.

Left to Right Back Row: Doug Wray, Bill Lenox, Kirk Sarell, Martin Beier
Front Row: Nick Beier, Janet Thomas, Tony Green
Not shown: Kathy Argenta

tony-warps-at-bills-06-28-2008-5

Here’s another group shot – we’ve been playing for decades and our roster changes slightly. Left-to-right: Janet Thomas, Doug Wray, Bill Lenox, Marty Beier, Lemuel Smith, Tony Green, Nick Beier and Kathy Argenta.

Tony was very musical – played and wrote music, was a DJ and guitar teacher. Here he is at our friend Marty’s 50th birthday party, belting out his rendition of The Man They Call Jayne from Firefly.

It freakin KILLED. He was in very rare form and it was most memorable.

Anthony David Green - 7-31-1950 — 10-00-2016He really loved the song and did it perfectly.

040_tony-2

Opening presents on Christmas – checking for safety before opening?dscn0027

Always  detail-oriented! He and our referee Bill routinely discussed crucial minutiae that success hinged on. Brilliant player.

tony-warps-at-bills-06-28-2008-1

Also a hilarious role-player. I’ve seen screen performers that didn’t work as hard. I can’t count the hours of sidesplitting laughter at his silliness.

tony-warps-at-bills-06-28-2008-3

Watching him laying on the couch where we had spent so many happy hours gaming, I realized the game had become real. This time the brave warrior would not be resurrected by miraculous magic or a generous Deity. This was the end of the road.

I sat vigil with him as his Light began to flicker and was witness to his iron will slowly being crushed by the agony of cancer. His children Daniel, Elizabeth, Victoria and Michelle came to him, bade him their farewells and he departed at 3:30 am on Sunday October 9th.

We’ve walked a lot of roads together my friend, wherever you walk now, I hope you are free of pain and care. You are sorely missed.


From Bill Lenox: “I think this was Tony’s favorite picture of himself…well, not exactly Tony, but he modeled for it.” – the illustration, After is by our mutual friend, Todd Lockwood.

tony


From Kathy Argenta:

Dear Friends,

Monday morning I went to the site where Bradfield Lumber use to be, on the corner of Pearl and Folsom in Boulder which is now a Park. I met Todd and Tony there when I was hired to work in the office in 1976, so many years ago. I sat in the park awhile, texted Todd and told him where I was,  and thought about our time together there and the fact that our connection has lasted all these many years, as it has with all of you.

Todd called me one day and asked if I would be interested in playing Dungeons and Dragons which of course he had to explain to me. Even then I had no idea, really, what was in store.

That began many years of the most fun I have ever had with one group of people.

Most important to me at that time was the fact that these sessions offered food for my mind heart and soul.

At the time I was a single parent raising two children ages 8 and 4.

Playing D&D with all of you was my escape and saving grace. I had so much fun and looked forward to each session. We laughed, we argued, we pigged out, we became one as a team against whatever forces were thrown at us and in the short and long run we became family.  Each one of you brought your own uniqueness to every game and you were missed when you didn’t show up. Each one of you still bring your own special self and are so dear to me.

Time passes but when we are all together again it’s as if I’ve never left. Tony would have liked it that we all came together and especially that you Todd came to join us.  How special is that? And Marty, even though you weren’t there in form I know you were in spirit.  As I looked around the table at Janet’s that Saturday it was just a given that you and Nick were there.

I’ve come and gone over the years and no matter how long I was absent I always felt when I returned that I had never left.  How special is that?

Tony you will always be with us.    “Black bird singing in the dead of night”……………, fly your way home my friend, fly free.

Love Kathy


Tony Green with Tommy Emmanuel, July 2016 - Photo by Martin Beier
Tony Green with Tommy Emmanuel, July 2016 – Photo by Martin Beier

A eulogy from Tony’s friend Marisa:

My Friend, Tony …

I used to tease Tony that he had ODD (oppositional defiant disorder). He would usually agree. But what made him difficult to be around sometimes also made him an original…In retrospect, I think Tony was actually a perfectionist–he liked things done right, he liked things done well, and he didn’t tolerate fools well. Tony was also a pretty private person and didn’t let many people into his inner circle. He could be the life of a party, but it was about the party, not him.

Here are some things he told me about himself over the five years I knew him:

He was born and raised in Kansas and grew up on a farm, loving the fireflies that lit up the summer nights. When he was five years old, he knocked out both front teeth when he slipped on some soap bubbles. During his elementary years, Tony went to Sacred Heart Catholic School. Believe it or not, he was also an altar boy for many years too! His favorite horse was named Topsy and he raised a cow named Babe, who was unfortunately struck by lightning and killed right after winning the regional4H competition. Some of his favorite memories were the summers spent at 4H Camp. He also fondly remembered playing Zarro on horseback with his siblings. His brothers shared how they all owned bb guns and used to pad themselves with their shirts and pants and shoot at each other. They had a “secret pact” that if any of them got killed, they would all kill themselves so no one got the blame. I bet their mom didn’t know about that one! He developed his interest in vampires when he read the book “Dracula” at age 15 and went on to write a full-length vampire novel in 1996 called “Blood of Time”.

Tony had a close call when the draft came. His number was 193 and they stopped drafting at 189. Instead, he went to college at KU and majored in theater. Even though he didn’t get his degree, he always liked the spotlight. He eschewed politics until Daniel came of age to be drafted–he didn’t want that to happen to his only son! Recently he was quite a fan of Bernie Sanders though.

His family moved to California when he was a young adult and Tony got to rub elbows with some of the rich and famous there. He was fond of telling how he used to jam with Mama Cass’s brother. In the 70s, he came through Colorado several times on road trips, fell in love with Boulder, and finally decided to move here. Some of the jobs he held during his adult life were editing, doing handyman work, and he even had a short-lived stint on the radio with a handyman call-in show. He had a great gift of gab and a keen sense of humor that kept us entertained and amused much of the time. And who could forget his spot-on imitations of Bob Dylan singing?

Obviously the love of his life was music. I wouldn’t even venture to guess how many albums he owned! He learned to play the guitar in his teens and in his early 20s he belonged to the band “Midnight Sun”, where he wrote and recorded several original compositions. His last public stage performance was an impromptu session when we went to Jake’s Roadhouse to support our friend Jay’s group this past summer and I badgered him to get up onstage to sing a song. He reluctantly complied and a half hour and SEVERAL songs later, just as reluctantly returned to his seat!

You may not know he was a DJ in Boulder for several years, under the name Brian Summers. I met him in the Not Ready For Primetime guitar group in January 2012. After the first time he came to my house for a meetup, he messaged me later to ask if I had found his favorite yellow pick. At the time I suspected he was trying to “pick” me up, but I looked anyway and couldn’t find it. I later found out he actually was particular about his picks and it was his favorite! He also told me he had met all of his serious relationship in bars, so I didn’t have to worry. Whew!

Tony became known in the music group for his general dislike of CCR-Creedence Clearwater Revival. It wasn’t that he disliked the music, but he had gotten to hear it played too much one summer and never got over it. Sometimes people would specifically request a CCR song just to get him going! As much as he “hated” CCR, he had a love affair with the Beatles that never waned and he could rattle off minutiae about each and every song they recorded effortlessly. His two favorite Beatles songs were “Day in the Life” and “Michelle” (after which he named his oldest daughter). It was all too fitting that Tony left us on John Lennon’s birthday–his hero probably wanted to jam …. He and I went to see the Fab Four in concert downtown last Spring and when we got there, found there was gum on one of our seats. He talked to an usher and got us moved from the 24th row to the 4th! Afterward we went to the Hard Rock Cafe, where he had never been before, and he spent almost two hours walking around to look (and comment) on all of the memorabilia.

He was also a big Who/Pete Townsend fan. But he often said his favorite song of all time was “Story in Your Eyes” by the Moody Blues. He even had a favorite chord (Am) and he loved the major 7th chords, which was why his final (and favorite) composition, “Sunfall”, was all done in all maj7 chords.

Although he always loved to teach new things in the meetup group, Tony became my “official” guitar teacher in the Spring of 2015 when I would go over for weekly lessons. He loved to push my learning and was willing to put up with many a clunker as I struggled to master barred chords. He would purposely pick songs that I liked and then write them out in an impossibly hard key to play just to watch me squirm. I usually stopped at his house before I continued to my salsa dancing for the evening and he used to say I was the most overdressed student he had ever taught. I figured if you can’t sound good, you may as well look good!

Tony had many other interests too. He collected perpetual calendars, he was an avid Broncos fan, and he played with a Dungeons and Dragons roleplaying group for decades. He was a rabid collector of family history and genealogy, and felt one of his greatest achievements was getting his parents and grandparents finally buried in the same place. He also collected wooden coins and artichokes. A born storyteller, he could tell you tales behind every knick-knack in his apartment (and there were many!). And I personally never saw anyone so enamoured by words–crossword puzzles, poetry, songs, stories. He loved finding just the “write” word to express himself. His tv was often on some “how it’s made/done” show or Jeopardy. He was a knowledge HOUND. He also was fond of carousels–who knew? And although he didn’t go in much for athletics, he liked to swim.

However, above all else, Tony’s greatest love was his family. I can’t tell you how many times he talked about his kids. He used to call them his “heart” and said without them, life would have no meaning. His apartment was filled with their pictures, their gifts, their accomplishments. He even wrote stories for them when they were younger. He spent a lot of time driving them to school or work or taking them out to eat. He was so proud of all of their achievements and most of all, their individuality. I remember him telling me how smart and good looking they all were–a father’s pride and joy! He always kept his phone nearby in case one of them needed something and was calling him. With Elizabeth, he shared his love of classic rock music. He was thrilled when Michelle got to follow her dream and be part of the Disney cast of”Frozen”, even if it was in faraway California. He often said Victoria was the most like him and he was pleased when she went off to college this year to study drama like he had. And Daniel allowed him to relive some of his own youth. I remember him telling me about how powerful his birth was to him and how proud he was when Daniel got his photo in the Broomfield newspaper and his Eagle Scout designation. And although we never talked about what had happened in his marriage, he told me several times he still loved Laura and I think he hoped for a reconciliation someday. One memory he shared was of an unusual lilac bush that they got on one of their anniversaries that actually bloomed twice a year. He greatly appreciated how she helped him in the months after his cancer was diagnosed, as he had to depend heavily on her to get him to and from the doctors and hospital.

One of his food loves was soft-shell crab and I think in some ways it described his personality as well–crabby on the outside but soft inside. Once he told me about an elderly neighbor who he helped with trash weekly and did handyman work for free and I asked why he often put on the curmudgeon mask so people thought he was so rough and gnarly. He said it was his I ittle secret–he didn’t want people to know he was actually a nice guy. But with all the sweets he liked to eat, they couldn’t help influence his personality, and like the conversation hearts he so enjoyed, he really did have a good heart. He gave me guitar lessons free when I was on sabbatical from my job and couldn’t afford to pay for them. He did many handyman jobs around my house and charged me half of what a regular repairman would. When I look around my house, his handiwork is everywhere–from the compost pallets we scrounged one cold winter night to my rain barrels to my bathroom fixtures to my dance mirror to my greenhouse glass to my walls and outlets. When I went through a rough patch in my own life, he let me come over and play music or go out to eat or watch some “must see” movie whenever I wanted just so I had some company. And what a movie buff he was! We watched everything from Doctor Strangelove to the Sherlock series to Cat Ballou. Quite a mix! Tony once confided his favorite musical was (much to my surprise) “My Fair Lady”. What a romantic softie!

In short, although he had his flaws and never seemed to have a dime to his name, Tony was a good guy who tried to do the best he knew how. He battled his cancer with tenacity and grace, always with an eye to the legacy he was leaving his kids on how to deal with adversity. I really thought he would beat the odds and overcome this horrible disease due to his sheer orneriness, but I admire how he handled the toughest challenge of his life. I still can’t believe he’s gone. I will miss his music at the meetups and I will miss him as the good friend he was, but I know his song will live on in my heart and in all of yours as well. When he came up to my mountain place to work on some plumbing, he signed my guest book with, “I’ll be back!” I’m holding him to that!


From Lemuel Smith:

I am at the library (which is a ways from home to be sure) but wanted to have a chance to speak to Tony’s passing.

When Tony and I talked I told him that for all the places I had been since I left Denver nowhere had I done anything I have enjoyed as much nor met people who have meant more to me than you guys. I know very well that my contact has been sporadic at best but that has taken nothing away from the depth of the feeling I have for all of you. And sporadic as it may be it is more contact than I have kept up with almost anyone from any of the places I have been since.

I will miss knowing Tony is there in Denver but in truth I miss all of you as well. All those Saturdays from before noon until the wee hours. How I looked forward with eager anticipation to playing with all of you each and every session.

You are often in my thoughts and always in my heart. I only wish I had gotten to know Marty and Nick better.

(I can’t believe he isn’t there anymore. Sigh.)

Lemuel D. Smith

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *