Memories of Louis by his brother Bob

MEMORIES OF LOUIS by his brother Bob

I am celebrating the life of Louis, my twin, who died on Christmas Eve at a hospital in Cambridgeshire, England with his daughter Elaine at his side. He had fought a long illness.. Lou and I had been together for 89 years and we would have had our 90th birthdays on April 5.

My earliest memory of Lou goes back to 1926. Outside our home in Onslow Square in London, England, we were in a double pram with Nanny watching over us when a strange woman suddenly ran up to Lou. “I want to bless this boy,” she said leaning down to touch his brow. Then she vanished. I had wanted to be blessed too.

I am blessed to have been Lou’s older brother (by half an hour). But Lou always watched over me. In 1936, I had been stricken with polio when we were students at Lakefield College. The quiet onset of the almost total paralysis of my limbs made Lou my loving minder.

As a boy, Lou had a passion for fixing radios, clocks and dreaming up new technologies. In 1944, he graduated from the Radio College of Canada which propelled him into joining the Royal Canadian Naval Volunteer Reserve RCNVR. His job included checking radar equipment in the crow’s nest of the warship Haida as she went through high speed trials at sea.

In February 1951. Lou found himself at the Coronet Theatre on Broadway in New York. He was in charge of creating stage lighting for Jotham Valley, a fast moving musical produced by international Moral Re-Armament.

The high point of the story required a sunrise over a western farming valley. The director
was convinced that Lou and his lighting crew could pull it off. The pro’s said that such complex effects had never been tried before. Digital controls didn’t exist in a day of large manually controlled lighting switchboards. And Lou succeeded.

The music and lyrics to accompany the sunrise were unforgettable and sometimes over the passing years our ‘twinly’ minds would click and we would start singing in unison the refrain from Jotham Valley “Somewhere In The Heart of a Man,” (Words and Music by Cecil Broadhurst, 1950)

“Somewhere in the heart of a man,
There’s a door,
And what’s more,
He can Fling it wide and throw the key away,
And for me – it’s like a sunrise on a summer day.”

A mass will be said for Louis at St. Mary’s Cathedral here in Kingston, Ontario initiated by Pat Kittner, a wonderful caregiver to Patsy and me. I will be there for Louis, his wife Anita,
daughter Elaine, son-in–law Michael Fish and granddaughters Khristina and Danielle.

Both Louis and I have been blessed.
He will remain in my heart forever.

Robert Fleming, Kingston, Ontario

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