Thursday, October 23, 2014

A Tribute to a Fallen Advisor

"Dad" Matt Wills
Today's post comes from "Dad" Matt Wills, Chapter Advisor of Crusade Chapter in Scranton, PA. Earlier this week, we posted a write up regarding the memorial tree that was planted in memory of "Dad" Garfield Beynon, who was an Advisor for Crusade Chapter for several decades. During that dedication, "Dad" Wills offered the following eulogy, in memory of "Dad" Beynon:

"Dad" Beynon never missed a beat,;always getting in on the action, whether it being the mediator to a disagreement of the Advisors and members or wanting to join in on the action in order for him to get his two cents in - no matter what.

It didn’t matter what he was asked of or for, he was always willing, no matter how far out of reach it seemed to be.  He never turned a person, a member, or a brother away - always lending that helping hand, and giving everyone he came in contact with the satisfaction and comfort of always knowing he was there if you needed him. 

So many people would remember his uncanny ability of always being able to tell someone where they could go could go and how to get there, in just a few words, and if you were unsure he would probably map it out for you. His DeMolay boys were "Dad" Beynon’s family, life, passion, and one of life’s prized possessions. When it came to DeMolay it seemed as nothing else mattered.
"Dad" Garfield Beynon

He was so very well known in PA DeMolay, having received so many honors and distinctions; but one sticks out as the most re-lived memory; so much so that no matter how many times we would tell the story, he would always get that deep down laugh and he would have tears in his eyes.  It was the 2000 PA DeMolay Convention, in Camp Hill.  "Dad" Labagh spent quite a few minutes speaking of the many attributes, and qualities "Dad" Beynon had given to DeMolay in his 31 years as an advisor.  After "Dad" Labagh finished speaking about the person who was nominated for the 2000 Advisor of the Year and recipient of Guild of the Leather Apron, he requested that they come to the podium.  Unbeknownst to Dad Labagh, "Dad" Beynon was fast asleep at the banquet table and snoring. Having been getting yelled at to get his attention, we were able to wake him up. He was a bit confused as to why were we yelling at him and all these people were standing looking at us and clapping, as "Dad" Dubeck was yelling Tom wants you at the podium.  Once he arrived at the podium, he was bewildered as to what he did or why he was standing at a podium with it only being him and "Dad" Labagh, as 200 members, and advisors were standing and applauding him. The table that the members and advisors sat at for that dinner and every other dinner was always the furthest one from the podium, unfortunately in this cases he found himself taking the longest walk and not knowing where he was going or why.

"Dad" Beynon will always be remembered for being able to catch himself a quick power nap. He always as he sat down the off switch would kick in.  So, I say to my friend, and to my Brother, "...and until we meet again," in your own frequently quoted wording “we’ll catch ya”.   

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