R.I.P. Bob Booth


(Photo by Jill Bauman)

I just received the following email from Matt Bechtel with devastating, if not entirely unexpected, news:

Dear Necon Family,

Papa is at peace, and free.

Bob Booth — writer, editor, publisher, founder of Necon and Necon E-Books, avid fan of horror and the written word, father, grandfather, mentor and friend — passed away last night shortly after 2AM. As you all know, Bob had been battling cancer for the last eight months (and had far exceeded any and all expectations at the time of his diagnosis, including his miraculous four days spent at Necon this summer). His passing was peaceful and dignified, completely without pain or fear.

Plans for a memorial mass are currently being made, and details regarding the services will be made public as soon as they are finalized.

Bob is survived by his beloved wife, Mary; his children, Dan and Sara; his granddaughter, Jillian; and by literally everyone who is reading this email / blog / post. The term “Necon Family” is not an empty platitude; Bob loved you all, and you touched his life as much as he touched yours. Your love, prayers, thoughts and well-wishes meant more to him, and did more for him, than I have the words to express.

Condolences can be sent to: Mary Booth, 67 Birchland Ave., Pawtucket, RI 02860. They can also be sent via email to Dan (daniel.booth77@gmail.com), Sara (saracalia08@gmail.com), or myself (bechtel.matt@gmail.com), or via this blog or Facebook post; you have our word they will be received and passed along.

On behalf of all of us — thank you, Papa. Safe passage. We love you.

I don’t have much to add to this. I don’t have the words right now. All I can say is that Bob Booth was a lovely man, and it was an honor to know and befriend him. I’m deeply saddened by the news of his passing. I’m so glad Jack Haringa and I got to spend a little time alone with him at the tail end of this past Necon.

There have been too many losses in the community recently. I would like a break now, please.

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