I’ve lost another friend, this time to cancer. Cindy McMahon Clancy was the much-loved wife of my friend Bob Clancy, a classmate from my college days at Brown University. Bob met Cindy early in his working career, and when they were married, I was both the best man and the driver—in my red Ford Fairlane (shown with them in the back seat in this picture). Bob and I were, among other things, scuba diving buddies. In my brief stint as a scuba instructor, Cindy signed up to learn to dive, so that she could join us in our forays in the chilly New England waters. That lasted until they became parents, and diving faded into memory.
Cindy and Bob were both avid skiers, and they tried on a couple of occasions to teach me to ski. I enjoyed the adventure, though I never took up the sport. I vividly remember driving with my family to see them at their ski house in Vermont (Cindy, having studied architecture, designed the house, and it’s a beauty). The driveway was steep and snowy, and I was hellbent for the top in our rear-wheel-drive Aerostar van. Out of the night, Cindy appeared in our headlight beams—come to tell us to park at the bottom. One look at us, and she turned and sprinted back up the hill ahead of us. Who are these lunatics we invited to visit? We fishtailed to the top, where Cindy welcomed us with gales of laughter and open arms.
Those two things about her—her laughter, and her welcoming warmth—were two of her most prominent qualities, which were remembered by a number of other friends and family at the post-funeral lunch we were part of the other day. And they are what we will miss most about her. You can read some of the details of her life in this obituary.
I haven’t seen Cindy and Bob much in recent years, but we did get to see them near the end, but while she was still able to enjoy the company. This last year was tough on both of them. I pray that the coming year will bring rest and healing to Bob, and to their lovely grown children, Steven and Christine.