Home > Main > Life Stages: A Dewey Hocevar Tribute

Life Stages: A Dewey Hocevar Tribute

Life can be viewed in many stages:  A progression of age, a collection of wisdom, the elements of family, even the mileposts of a career.  A simple classification of these stages can be reduced to what has happened (Yesterday), what will happen (Tomorrow), and what is happening (Today).  The challenge is to correctly allocate the time spent pondering each of these.  We each only have a set balance of days in each stage and must assess the importance of their numbers with careful respect. In any regard, there comes a time when we may worry about the things that have happened in all the yesterdays before or struggle with the things that are going to happen in the days to come.  As our pasts get longer and our futures shorter, we tend to contemplate what could (or should) have been or what might come to be.  In the lurch we forget what is really important.

I feel blessed to have known a man that valued all three.


This man took every opportunity to measure his history with his present in an effort to mold his future.  Each day that rang up in his count of yesterdays included a lesson, a message, something that could get him through to tomorrow; a spiritual longing to take something positive from every experience.

A life-long musician who heard the subtle melodies of everyday life swirled with the flash and glam of the dream of celebrity, this man took the loves and hates, the pain and trials, the successes and failures and mapped them out in 4/4 time.  And you could hear it in every note.

An artist who viewed the world through his cache of yesterdays could take a simple photograph of a staircase, a door, or a puppy and transform it into the beautifully surreal; he would happily take the common and make it superbly uncommon.

I feel blessed to have known a man saw the value of his yesterdays instead of the hardships.


This man spent a fair amount of time dreaming about the future, and he would gladly carry on whimsical debates, always with a toothy smile, about this or that musician, artist, or designer and the contributions that he or she did or didn’t make to the artistic community.

In his contemplations about the future, he always wanted things to be better, peaceful.  He wanted to share his creativity with an audience who missed his genius at first glance, to preserve something of his past and gift it to those of us with a balance of tomorrows to cherish.

This man embraced the ideas and ideals of others even when he didn’t agree.  He saw the creative touch in genres of music that weren’t his particular tastes and he saw the value in the creative process that all artists, musicians, and writers endure every day.  He saw value in the diversity of these outlets.

I feel blessed to have known a man that dreamt of tomorrow instead of worrying about it.


This man passed to a higher plane, and with his passing our opportunity to exchange one last greeting, render one last hug, or even, could we have known, share a final, heart-wrenching goodbye is lost to the winds of our own yesterdays.  Yet it is the todays that this man valued most.  In those, he trumpeted his daughter’s every milestone, every success, and even every skinned knee.  He sweetly smiled looking into his wife’s eyes truly feeling her own struggles with what life threw her way.  It was in his todays that he was a man that I am happy to call my friend.

I feel blessed to have known Dewey Hocevar, a man that lived today like it was the last instead of trying to reserve them for the future.

As our pasts get longer and our futures shorter, we tend to contemplate what could (or should) have been or what might come to be.  In the lurch we forget what is really important:  Today.

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  1. Debbie (Harrell) Gates
    September 18th, 2015 at 16:54 | #1

    Today, I was thinking about Dewey and remember this being read at his memorial service. I stumbled on it and read it again.

    Very wise words for us all. I knew him well, and I still miss him. Life is short. Today is truly what matters. Not only today, but the very seconds of each moment of the day.

    Carpe diem’

  2. Tim (JT) Atkinson
    August 30th, 2016 at 11:23 | #2

    A few days ago I realized I hadn’t talked to Dewey in quite a while and started looking for him via Google (where else, right?). For whatever reason, I never considered what I just learned from your tribute. As I get older, my own mortality consumes more of my thoughts simply because I have had many friends from childhood pass as have many others I’ve meet and befriended over the past 50+ years.

    Dewey and I hit it off instantly when we started working together at Parago in 2000 or so, then stayed in touch from time to time after I left the company in late 2001. It wasn’t on a regular schedule, but it was consistent over the years. We had many similar, and many opposing, outlooks and attitudes that became exposed during out many “philosophical” conversations, which made out relationship somewhat unique to the degree that none of the opposing/opposite viewpoints ever affected a mutual respect and deeply felt kinship.

    I’m saddened to know that we’ll never have any more conversations, or debates, or shared life experiences. So, RIP my dear friend, and may God be with your wife and daughter as I know you’re missed by them and all of the people whose lives you’ve touch, influenced, and mentored during your lifetime. I know you’re composing tremendous symphonies in that great digital studio in Heaven.

    I bid you farewell with a sad heart,
    Tim Atkinson, AKA JT (“Just Tim”, courtesy Dewy Hocevar)

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