Friday, 15 June 2012 12:16
A memorial service for Bob Kecskemety, a popular gay journalist in South Florida, will be held on Tuesday, June 26, at 6 p.m. at his beloved Pride Center at Equality Park in Wilton Manors.
Kecskemety, living the past year with a spreading and inoperable bone cancer, died the night of May 30.
At the end he was being watched over by his close friend, and caregiver, Tim Yatteau, who described Bob “as a genuine person who was friends with everyone he came into contact with.” Yatteau has also been watching over his dogs, Stippie and Sparkie.
Bob was born in Cleveland, Ohio on November 23, 1951. Before his death he was convalescing at the Manor Pines in Wilton Manors, discussing with physicians the possibility of moving into a hospice.
“It’s ironic,” he told SFGN. “That as a kid I worked as delivery boy at the Williams City Drug Store down the block, delivering medications to patients here in the Manor Pines Convalescent Home, and now I am a patient here myself, waiting for someone to bring me my meds.”
He said that between puffs of a cigarette. “It can’t hurt me now,” he joked, “It can’t hurt me now. And it still relaxes me.”
A graduate of Fort Lauderdale High School who went to Broward Community College, Bob became well known to the gay community through his entertaining column in Scoop Magazine in the 1990′s, titled ‘Shut Up and Focus.’ Trained in audiovisual work, Kecskemety and his camera was often a fixture at community events, such as the annual World AIDS Day festivities in Wilton Manors, along with PrideFest functions.
Bob was also the graphic designer and layout artist for Scoop, long before becoming a writer and editor for other gay publications, including Buzz Magazine, the Independent, HotSpots, and most recently the Florida Agenda.
Many people did not know that Bob, along with the profiles he did of many interesting personalities locally and nationally, most recently put together the GLCC Voice for the Pride Center. Recognizing that his time may be limited, Bob recently met with Executive Director Robert Boo, in the hopes of setting up a legacy to insure that the Voice will continue to be published when he passes.
Kecskemety sought out his long time friend, attorney Norm Kent, publisher of SFGN, and asked that the proceeds of his modest estate be used to fund the continued publication of the ‘Voice’ by the Pride Center.
Kent contacted attorney Robin Bodiford, who had prepared wills for Kecskemety’s mother and father. A meeting was then arranged at the Manors Convalescent Center between Pride Center Executive Director Robert Boo and Bodiford, where Kecskemety executed documents naming Kent as his trustee, to insure continued publication of the Center’s ‘Voice.’
“The proceeds from the sale of Bob’s house will fund the Voice,” Kent stated.
On behalf of the Pride Center of Equality Park, Robert Boo, stated, “We are overwhelmed by the generosity and love shown by Bob Kecskemety. This legacy honors him and humbles us. We should all be appreciative of his enduring kindness.”
Each of the subsequent issues of the Voice will state that they are published “in the memory and through the donations of the Robert S. Kecskemety Trust.”