I was saddened to hear of the death of Ralph Waite, a favourite actor of mine from long ago and still making appearances in TV programmes nowadays. In the 1970s he was one of the lead actors in the Waltons – how many times did our boys used to call out Night Mum. . . . Night Dad. . . . Night John-Boy . . . .? More recently he played the part of Mark Harmon’s character’s father, in NCIS. Funny how we came across him both in his younger days and then in old age. He came across with just the right degree of gravitas.
I feel as if there is a kind of connection with people who share this earth with us. And of course with actors and celebrities, we can feel a closeness simply by being exposed to their public personna. In hearing some of Waite’s obits on the news, I was pleasantly surprised to hear that he had been an ordained presbyterian pastor. However, I was saddened to learn of his difficulties with alcoholism in his younger life.
Nevertheless he was someone with a charismatic presence onscreen.
May he rest in peace.