Wednesday, July 01, 2009

Bittersweet Harvey Nominee


Earlier today (or technically, yesterday, as I'm writing this somewhat after midnight), the Harvey Awards, one of two of the more prestigious awards in the comics industry, announced this year's nominees. Shockingly, I was among them, in the Best Inker category, for my work on Buzzboy: Sidekicks Rule. I've been working in this industry for over fifteen years, and this is the first time I've ever been in the running for any award, much less one of the most respected in the business. One would think that today would have been a particularly proud one for me, and any other year it would have been. However, as I sit here in my bed typing this on my laptop, my wife Traci is beside me, in a hospital bed. She signed herself out of hospice yesterday, in one last ditch effort to prolong her life.

Many of you who know me, or who have been reading my posts here, know that Traci is battling metastatic melanoma. It is well documented on this blog, as well as other places online, how tough a disease this is to beat. Traci was diagnosed in August of last year, in fact, a year later, to the very day that I discovered my good friend Mike Wieringo had died. Less than a year later, the doctors have told us that she needs to prepare for the end of her life. We don't know how much longer that might be, but time is certainly short.

So, dear friends, while it is indeed a great honor to be nominated, this is not something I can enjoy or savor. Not right now anyway. I hold no illusions that I might win, with such distinguished talent in my category. However, I do recognize how incredible it is to be in such esteemed company. I would like to wish all the luck in the world to all the nominees. I would also like to thank all of you have written or called to congratulate me.

For my part though, I don't deserve any award. That honor belongs to my wife. If anyone should get an award it is Traci, for her tenacity, courage, and grace in the face of the disease that will soon take her life. For that reason, I'd like to do something completely unconventional. I know many people who win awards dedicate them to someone, but even if I were to win, I'm not certain if Traci will be here to see it. So, I'd like to dedicate this nomination to my beautiful, brave bride. Nobody should have to go through what she's dealing with, and the least I can do is allow her one more moment in the spotlight.

Trace, I love you with all my heart, and this one goes out to you, PMK.

All my love,
Rich

25 comments:

Leanne said...

Rich, you and your family have to be some of the strongest people I know. Though the nominee is very well deserved, I can definitely understand it being bittersweet during a time like this. I keep you both in my thoughts, always.

ScottN01 said...

Wow! Sorry to hear of Traci's state! My father has been going downhill this year as well with his cancer so it's been no picnic here either. I wish you well and hopefully she can keep going and fighting it!!

Congrats on the nom!

John Gallagher said...

Rich-- we are all rooting for you, Traci, and Jason!

Danna said...

Rich - Ditto, we're rooting for you, Traci and Jason as well. Don't give up - keep fighting!

Robert said...

Hey Rich, I've been where you are, with a lot less time to prepare. Your strength and love are clear and know that you are both supported in the thoughts and prayers of countless friends and fans.

Scott Christian Sava said...

Hey Rich...
You know as always our hearts, thoughts, and prayers are with you, Traci, and Jason.

I know both Traci and Jason are proud of you for all of your hard work and love.

As bittersweet as this nomination may be. Take a moment and smile. you deserve it.

We miss you all.

Love,
Scott and family

J.C. Vaughn said...

Rich -

God be with you, my friend. This is tough news. Best wishes to both of you, and your family.

JCV

AlNickerson said...

Hi Rich,

Congratulations on the nomination. I am so sorry to hear about the situation with Traci. I’ll continue to keep praying for you, Traci, and your family.

best,
Al Nickerson

Paul D. Storrie said...

Rich,

I'm so sorry to hear of Traci's prognosis. My good thoughts go out to her and to you.

PDS

KeViN Conn said...

Rich,

I don't know what to say other than, I am so sorry. I hope the both of you stay strong and she beats this.

Michael Cho said...

My thoughts go out to you and your wife, Rich.

dave roman said...

Here's some extra positive energy sent your way. Strength and well wishes for you and your family.

gordon said...

So sorry to hear this. All my best to both of you. And congrats on the nomination--you deserve some good news!

Evan said...

Rich -- I don't know you, but I just wanted to add my well wishes after reading about you situation on The Beat. Awards mean little, people mean everything, you're reminding us of that. My thoughts go out to you both, be strong, cherish every moment and every memory and I hope Traci and you have a lot more time to spend together. Take care, both of you.

Trish said...

Love to you both, Rich. You're such a terrific couple and I'm so heartbroken for you. Please tell Traci we are all keeping her in our prayers. Huge comforting hugs to you all.

Cully Hamner said...

I'm thinking of you and Traci, Rich. I know we don't know each well, but if there's one thing I can tell by the times we've met, it's that you're good and you're strong. I can't imagine that Traci's any different.

Best wishes to you both.

Brigid said...

i was very sorry to hear the sad news when I talked to you at NYCC. My thoughts will be with you and Traci in the days to come.

Gail said...

I am so sorry to hear of this terrible tragedy that has been visited upon the both of you. I'm glad you found one another, though, as true, enduring love seems to be a rare gift indeed.

And I dispute with intensity the notion that you don't deserve an award. I think you both deserve a caseload.

Much strength to you both.

Bob Almond said...

Rich, I don't really know you but all the same I have Traci in my thoughts and prayers during this painfully traumatizing time for you two. I'm wishing a miracle for you guys so try to hang tough, inker brother, folks are rooting for you both.

Congratulations for the nomination.
Sincerely,
Bob Almond

antonio said...

Rich just love for you and for Traci.

I will keep her on my prayers...


JESUS ANTONIO

P.J. Magalhães said...

I know what my g/f and best friend mean to me, so i cannot (more like, don't want to) imagine what you guys are going through.

All our prayers, love, strength and miracle wishes from the both of us.

MarkmcK said...

Jeez-us!

I know Ive been removed from you guys for quite a while now and I do consider you a good friend. Somebody that I can discuss life and business with, kids and married life, that kinda stuff. I guess I had hoped that if I hadn't checked in for a while that the news of Traci's health would be greatly improved and we all could reflect on the difficulties that you went through, back then.

Boy was I wrong. I am whole-heartedly upset that I haven't been a good friend to you in these most difficult of times.

I know loss. My father passed of prostate "C" in 2002, my younger brother was diagnosed with Leukemia at age 35 and my Mom has had bladder cancer. But this isn't about them its about you and Traci.

If there is anything and I mean anything I can do for you and Traci, PLMK ASAP. My prayers go out to your family in this time of need. Please hug her for me. I was out in Sayville, LI last week for the 4th its was beautiful that day, now Im thinking about that connection I have with Traci.

Bless you always,

MarkmcKenna

Yetiman said...

Dear Rich,
I cannot even begin to understand the cliff that life has tossed your family from. I just finally put Harry down to sleep, and my wife and I read your blog. Tears are tapping against my keyboard. Jeannie is crying too. I am so sorry that I have no idea what to say. Jeannie and I are here, if there is anything we could possibly do to make your family's life better in any way. It's not fucking fair... it's just not fucking fair (selfish of me to curse I'm sorry). Please give Traci our love and let her know we are thinking of her...every single minute, of each day.
You, Traci, and Jason should all receive awards for being what we are all supposed to be....
....the embodiment of love. You, Traci and Jason are heroes... as I don't comprehend this world we live in.
Treasure this time with your family. We are thinking of you Rich. WE are thinking of you Traci, We are thinking of you Jason.... We Love You.. so so much.
Sorry is the only word that I can think of....

So so so sorry Rich...

Love forever,
Gino, Jeannie and Harrison

Sam said...

Rich, congratulations on the nomination. I'm keeping you both in my prayers.

all the best,
sam

Rich Faber said...

Everyone: thank you so much for all of your good thoughts, prayers, and wishes. I'm completely overwhelmed by the response here. What an incredible business I work in where there is so much kindness. Thank you all for taking the time to respond.

It's a tough battle, but we're fighting hard. We know the ultimate outcome, unfortunately, but we're doing everything we can to make this situation as comfortable as we can. Friends and family have been wonderful, and the online (and personal) support we've gotten from the comics industry has been nothing short of fantastic.

I'll try to keep you all posted as much as I can. Again, many thanks from me and my family.

Best,
Rich