It was with great sadness and a heavy heart I received the news yesterday morning from a mutual friend that author Lockard F. Young, or Lockie as he was know to all of us, had died in hospital, surrounded by his family. I like to think Lockie was also surrounded – via the internet – by the community of writers and readers that had been drawn to him. I for one counted Lockie as a very close member among my own “family” of writers, and he was valued here on Reading Recommendations for his support of me, this blog, and his fellow authors, as well as for his writing, his striving desire to perfect that craft, and his general good humour and comraderie – in spite of all he was suffering healthwise.
Lockie’s was one of the early promotions I posted here after I first set up the blog in November, 2013, and he has come back for several updates (and here), the most recent being this past Saturday, with news of a new print edition of his book. I know that seeing his words in actual print had been a longtime dream for Lockie. He was excited by the prospect and told me so in a private message just last week when I proposed a promotion update on this blog. Although he’s no longer here to see this dream become a reality, I’m sure he’s aware that I, and many other friends, will do everything we can to bring this new print book to the attention of readers everywhere. It’s the very least we can do for someone who was so generous with his promotion of all our books. Lockie was also a member of the Reading Recommendations Revisited group of authors – those I’ve promoted here who have gone above and beyond in giving back by way of support and promotion of me and their fellow writers.
Earlier this summer I put out a call to a group of author-friends who I’ve considered are part of my own “family” of writers as I’m planning to publish an anthology of their contributions with the title, We Are Family, under the IslandShorts imprint. Lockie was one of the very first to respond and submit a piece to me for inclusion in the book. While, Lockie won’t see the project completed, he will still be very much with us when the eBook is finally published – I’ve decided to dedicate this book to his memory.
The world is a better place having had Lockie in it. Even though I never met the man in person and had never even spoken with him online or by phone, I considered his to be among my most valued friendships. Lockie, you will be missed, but you’ll live on through the words you so generously wrote and left with us. Thank you, my friend, for writing.