I met FOF Lissa in the early 1970s, when we were in our twenties and reporters at an important trade newspaper in the home furnishings industry. She had moved to New York from Cleveland following a divorce (she married very young and it just didn’t work out).
When Lissa met Bud, it was love at first sight. He was a preppy handsome, well-spoken man. She was wearing hot pants and a red, Little Orphan Annie style wig. It didn’t perturb Lissa that Bud was 23 years her senior, with five kids and two marriages behind him. He was a charmer, smart and he adored her. He filled many roles, including father figure (Lissa’s father died when she was young); lover, adviser, and friend.
They married and have had countless adventures together: Owned homes everywhere from the New Jersey shore to the Berkshires in Massachusetts; traveled the globe; supported each other’s careers; weathered a few severe storms (Lissa’s throat cancer years ago, for one); reinvented themselves a few times.
Lissa has been a giving, loving, entertaining stepmother to Bud’s five children. Bud was a wonderful son-in-law to Lissa’s mom, Alice, even if Alice was his contemporary. Lissa was even emotionally generous to Bud’s former wives and to his children, who she thinks of as her own. Lissa and Bud took care of each other, mentally, physically and emotionally.
Lissa broke her hip in March and had an emergency hip replacement. Spent a week in the hospital and another five days in rehabilitation. Through her convalescence Bud was Lissa’s principal caregiver. This is especially significant because yesterday was Bud’s 90th birthday.
I remember seeing Bud for the first time about 40 years ago. He was standing on Fifth Avenue and 12 Street, waiting for Lissa. Va-va-voom, I thought.