Happy Birthday Papa

Posted October 4th, 2011 in Memories of Horst, Photos of Horst by neil

I took these photos back in spring of 2005, on our last trip to Brianhead, Utah. We used to go every year back in the late ’80s/early ’90s… probably 5 or 6 years straight. This last trip was extra fun because I took Lauren and Melanie along for their first time there. The girls took some snowboarding lessons, and my dad and I had some fun riding the slopes together.

Horst loved to snowboard, but unlike most skiers-turned-snowboarders, he still enjoyed skiing as well. So, he would rent a board on a day he would spend boarding. He definitely held his own on the slopes, and even though he fractured his ankle once while doing it a few years before this trip… he still got back out on the board.

Happy Birthday, Papa. We all miss you and love you so much.

One Year

Posted May 11th, 2011 in Memories of Horst, Photos of Horst by neil

Papa getting photos of Brody in the sandbox. Nov, 2009

It’s tough to put into words how it feels for this milestone to arrive; One year has gone by since he’s passed. Although it may sound like a cliche figure-of-speech, but I can truly say that there has not been a day gone by that I have not thought about him. Some days it is all consuming, others it’s a surge that comes in quick and fades out slowly.

We all miss him dearly, but what was unexpected to me was how much I miss his voice. I remember that when he called me on the phone, I would answer and he would greet me with “Hi, this is Horst”… as if I were a work colleague.  I always got a kick out of that, and would actually laugh out loud when he did it. A few months after he passed I had called the home phone at my mom’s house, and his voice was still on the machine. Continue Reading »

Last Roll Of 35mm Film

Posted March 25th, 2011 in Memories of Horst by neil

After my dad passed away, my mother gave me his old camera. I believe that she knew it would be in good hands with me, and that I’d cherish it forever. It is a Yashica Lynx-1000, and he bought it sometime in the early 1960s. This camera was used constantly and captured many family memories, and much of the old photos that I’ve been posting on this site.

When she gave it to me, I took a look at it and pressed the small button on the bottom that is used to rewind the film when the roll is done. It made that familiar click that I recognized to mean that it had a roll of film in it. After that I spun the rewind crank until I knew the film was in the canister, popped the back of the camera open, and sure enough… there was a roll of Kodak Gold 200 35mm film.

Immediately I wondered how long it had been in the camera. Continue Reading »

College Era Photos

Posted December 22nd, 2010 in Memories of Horst, Photos of Horst by neil

A couple of months back in early October, I received some emails from two of Horst’s college classmates from back in Connecticut. First it was Bob Balaban who sent me an email, which I posted here. Then he got me in touch with Bob Pekar, who had re-connected with my dad back in 1989 and stayed in contact over emails throughout the years until the month before he passed. Bob P. explained that their freshman class of the University of Bridgeport Industrial Design was 30+ students. When they graduated in 1962, there were only 7 of them remaining.

Bob P. shared this with me in one of his emails:

I loved his photos and told him his talent was a toss up between design and photography. The love he had for your family and nature really comes out in the photos. Since receiving the sad news, thoughts of the good times at school and the Continue Reading »

A note from an old schoolmate

Posted November 9th, 2010 in Memories of Horst by neil

At the end of September, I received a message from one of Horst’s college schoolmates. They were classmates in Connecticut at the University of Bridgeport in the Industrial Design Program and graduated together in 1962.

To Horst’s Family and friends:
I was a schoolmate of Horst at UB-ID and was one of seven who graduated together in 1962. Horst was an excellent student and designer but most of all, a great friend.  I remember him as always with a smile, and me, as a sort of class clown, reveled in making him laugh. It was easy to do with Horst, as he sometimes did not understand my sense of humor, but would laugh anyway just to make me feel good. Continue Reading »

Way back to 1974

Posted July 24th, 2010 in Memories of Horst, Photos of Horst by neil

For more details on this photo, please see my family site over here.

A comment from Christopher

Posted June 18th, 2010 in Memories of Horst by neil

Although this was a comment on a previous post, I though that it was so awesome that it deserves to be it’s own post.

I had the great fortune of working for Horst for many years while at Lightolier.  Horst was a wonderful leader and a great mentor.  He possessed an extraordinary ability to see the good in people and to gently guide them to be the best they could be.  He was very instrumental in my career development.  He always provided exceptional insights and personal experience.  Although it has been years since I have reported to him, and I am now with another company, there are not many days when I do not say to myself “What would Horst have done”.  He was an inspirational man of a magnitude that is rarely seen today.  I will miss Horst greatly, but will often think of him with the highest of regard.  I wish you the family and friends the strength to carry on as Horst would have wanted. I am just grateful for having had met him, worked with him, and have had the pleasure of calling him a friend.

Abschied mein Freund, bis wir uns wieder treffen!
(Translation: Farewell my friend until we meet again)

Christopher J. Lajoie

Comments Off on A comment from Scott

A comment from Scott

Posted June 16th, 2010 in Memories of Horst by neil

Here’s another comment from a previous post that I wanted to share with everyone.

I didn’t know Horst as deeply as many of the people that I still work with at Lightolier did, but I did have the pleasure of knowing him and working on a few projects under his guidance. He always struck me as a pleasant, soft-spoken, gentleman. Horst had a certain way of guiding you towards the right path without neccesarily pointing the way…it’s difficult to describe, but I suppose anyone who knows him likely understands. He was definitely one of those rare people that command your immediate respect, because as modest as he was, you just kinda knew that this guy was brilliant. He also had a great sense of humor. So I really enjoyed the times I spent in his company, even though it was all around work. I was a bit sad to hear that he was going to retire several years ago, but at the same time very happy for him. We chatted a bit with each other briefly a few times since he retired, and that was pretty much the extent of my relationship with Horst.

Well, of course we were all shocked and saddened by the seemingly sudden loss of him. Unfortunately, I never realized the depth and breadth of Horst’s talents and humanity until I had the opportunity (another of Horst’s favorite words) to browse through this web page and explore some of the links to Flickr, and see his photos, and realize how many lives he touched in a wonderfully positive way.

Horst is the kind of guy you didn’t have to know too well in order to shed a tear over his loss. By all accounts, he was a good man and will be missed by many…myself included.

Scott Dupre

Scott, your words mean so much to the family. Thank you very much for sharing with everyone.

A message from Tom

Posted June 15th, 2010 in Memories of Horst by neil

I find it so amazing that friends of my dad take the time and share with us what it meant to them to know him. This here is one from Tom, who worked with him when I was just a baby.

I had the pleasure of not only working with Horst while with Lightolier but many years earlier when we both worked together at Gotham Lighting back in the 70’s.  In particular, I can remenmber the day that he told me that your family was moving to Australia. When I asked him how he was ever able to convince your mother to make such a drastic relocation move, he told me that it wasn’t him but rather, your mom who was the driving force behind this decision. We kind of chuckled over this fact. With Australia being at that time more of a frontiers land, indicative of the Old West in the USA, I wished him and the rest of your family God Speed in this new endeavor. Once there, through Dan Schisler, we got periodic updates on how you were all doing. That experience sounded like REAL FUN and I am sure left lasting memories on the entire Bernhart clan.

Your dad was a very special person and will surely be missed. May God Bless you and your family and truly, your dad made a difference and touched the lives of many peoples.

Well, Tom… our time in Australia had very lasting memories with all of us. I will be posting many photos of our good times down under, as soon as I get some scanned in. Thank you for sharing your wonderful memories of him.

A message from Bob

Posted June 13th, 2010 in Memories of Horst by neil

Here is another message from an old work friend

Horst was a very special person. I had the privilege of working with Horst for several years. He was the epitome of professional, always……………..
He was also the happiest man on earth. He always had a warm smile and a friendly greeting for everyone. He was a bright spot in a lot of peoples lives which is also a reflection of his family

His light truly shined bright. I hope to see him again in eternity………….
Love, His friend Bob Nursall