A Life Enriched

I am privileged to say that Bob Griffith was my friend.  And what a friend!  My husband, the “other Bob”, chaired the committee that brought him to the University of Maryland, and into our lives.  When my husband was ill with cancer, Bob and Barbara were steadfast in their support.  Bob, who was then a dean, really meant it when he said to call if I needed him.  One particular day my husband was quite ill and needed to get to his oncologist.  I couldn’t manage him and his wheelchair; I called Bob.  He was in a meeting, but came to the phone when told who was calling. The meeting was summarily adjourned and Bob quickly appeared at our door, took us downtown  to the doctor, and waited for us.  He gently and lovingly shepherded my husband and me to the office, back to his car, and to our home. With his warmth and obvious caring, he made us feel it was no imposition…in fact, it was a favor bestowed on him.

Through the 22 years since he came to Maryland, we remained friends, shared many experiences, dinners (usually cooked by Bob) and lots of laughs and a few tears.  The four of us went through a number of career changes/challenges over those years, and we shared the good and bad phases of each of them.  We always knew Barbara and Bob were there for us….listening, reacting, supporting.  What a rare human being, what intellect, warmth and devotion to all the causes we thought important.  And yet, what a humble, self-deprecating , accomplished man.  He was a devoted husband; doting father/father-in-law, and ga-ga grandfather.  He reveled in the antics of his grandkids with a joy that was fun to behold.  The loss of such a man is immeasurable; the fact that I knew him was enriching.  I miss him and always will.

Celia Shapiro


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