A visit to Mount Auburn Cemetery

Reading Time: 2 minutes

From Cynthia Broner

At a time when community is more precious than ever, we stopped by to visit with some late greats at Mount Auburn Cemetery — a tremendous source of zen and beauty for those of us fortunate to live nearby. Stay safe, ‘GBHers.

Nancy Walker: I remember bursting in David Ives’ office, as an 8-year old, and asking him “So, what do you do?” He told me he was In Charge and why don’t I go back down to the Zoom Room! When I came back FT, he never let me forget that! God Rest…❤

Bob Manosky: This is unbearable I ate so much Chinese food.

Bob Manosky: I knew them both. She was a riot.

Syrl Silberman: Truly a great man. I met him once and thought I would collapse in awe.

Michael Ambrosino: A really nice fellow. Always helpful with good ideas about international affairs and advice on The Middle East.

Larry Heyman: This one got me. Rest well Mr. Kaup.

Christine Nuwayser Davis: Larry.

Cynthia Broner: 😢 I visit him every day, Christine.


  1. Anita Ruthling Klaussen on May 8, 2020 at 11:15 pm

    Bud Collins (d March 6, 2016) is at Mount Auburn, overlooking WILLOW POND, under a lovely tree… check him out…

    Quote from the Owl and the Pussycat: “And hand in hand, on the edge of the sand, they danced by the light of the moon, the moon, the moon. They danced by the light of the moon.”

  2. Dighton Spooner on May 8, 2020 at 2:37 pm

    One of my most memorable interactions with David Ives was my first.

    It was 1974 and I’d just graduated from college. It was my first day on the job as a writer/researcher on Say Brother. I was coming down the central corridor at 125 Western Ave. for the first time when I saw David coming toward me.

    He stopped and said enthusiastically, “You’re Dighton Spooner, I’m David Ives welcome to Channel 2!” I never found out how he knew who I was and that it was my first day at work, but I was impressed that the president of the only place I wanted to work in television knew who I was.

    I’m pleased that my mother and father are in such good company at Mount Auburn Cemetery.

  3. Michael Ambrosino on May 7, 2020 at 5:32 pm

    The joy of approaching 90 in a few days is to greet the day, converse with my wife, kiddies, grand kiddies and have some life to which to look forward.

    The saddness is to know that so many of those lovely men and women who created WGBH Radio and Television are gone and I cannot share some new headline or tidbit with them.

    We did not think of ourselves as pioneers. Many days, we were just trying to keep the ship afloat.

    We did know we were fortunate to find a place and a profession that allowed us so much freedom to explore these new magic boxes and see what challenge we might find next.

    We also enjoyed the fellowship of so many whose creative actions each day made the magic happen.

    • Sheila Smith Simollardes on May 8, 2020 at 6:53 pm

      You’ve always had a delightful way with words, Michael, and I’ve tried to emulate your style when communicating with friends or co-workers.

      Just last week during our (virtual) staff meeting at Fruitlands Museum I told a WGBH story, after which the group applauded. Yesterday I learned that Tony’s brother and wife will be retiring to Sarasota next Fall. (Six degrees of separation?)

      Hoping you & Lynne are faring well.
      Remain “safe & sound” throughout.
      Happy Birthday Number Ninety!
      Best wishes to you both.

      “CHEERS!” — Sheila

    • Don Hallock on May 8, 2020 at 10:35 pm

      An admirable and touching pilgrimage, Michael; reminds me of a letter I had been intending to send in for some time.

      Didn’t have so many words to share, but this thought: Yes, we didn’t see ourselves so much as blazing a trail, as trying to do the right thing by our viewers and, by extension, our world. In the late ’50s one Boston University intern (who’s now passed on) proclaimed the following, “We don’t say much, but we don’t offend anyone.”

      Well, offense, even in the pursuit of truth, was never our stock in trade. Doing the right thing was. And, every time I see and hear the WGBH logo and sting at the tail of another superb piece of journalism or scholarship or any other typical gesture toward enrichment and enlightenment, I am moved to remember that the pursuit of ‘the right thing’ informed and undergirded virtually everything we did, and has never slipped from the deep mandate of our organization.

      I can’t think of a soul who has graced our number who, through the many successes or occasional stumbles, didn’t strive toward that end.

      The spirits of those no longer present among our ‘family’, as well as those fine beings still working to feed the needs of our world in the most erudite and compassionate style, live, and will live, in the lineage of those ‘doing the right thing.’

      Thanks, Michael, for the reminder.

    • Lo Hartnett on May 9, 2020 at 7:46 pm

      Michael, you managed to capture that gleeful feeling of knowing you were doing something important, fun, innovative – learning every step of the way. And the opportunity was presented to you, encouraged you to grow, experiment, achieve. And we sure did. Thank you Michael.

    • Charles Walcott on May 11, 2020 at 4:25 pm

      Hi Michael, You’ve got me beat by 5 years but I think I was at WGBH even before you were!

      I started in 1955 with Mary Lela Grimes helping with Discovery. It was a wonderful experience and we had many adventures including filling the studio with flying bats just before Louis Lyons gave the news.

      From my perspective it was a great adventure and the station was staffed with enthusiasts who were willing to help us try all sorts of new things. I got great help from Franco Romagoli in learning about filming and used it to do my undergraduate thesis.

      Then when I returned to do Exploring Nature, you were leading the 21″ classroom. I well remember your reaction when I told you I had hired a senior Harvard Professor to teach a 5th grade class!

      Yes, it was a team, and a wonderful and exciting one too!

  4. Helen Andrews on May 7, 2020 at 4:12 pm

    Thank you for this message. DOI was so inspiring, and never too ‘important’ to be part of the fun in fundraising. When I put him down as a reference for a job, he wrote about how funny I was at a farewell party for a staff member.

    I was a ‘celebrity escort’ for Franco Romagoli at the “Great Chefs of Public Television” event. A gracious gentleman.

    • Harriet Reisen on May 7, 2020 at 4:45 pm

      My first assignment at WGBH was to associate produce a segment on poultry for Rick Hauser’s “Walsh’s Animals.

      Franco Romangnoli was photographing chickens for us down in Taunton, and I rode down with him. Not knowing at all who he was, when Franco talked about Italian food I told him proudly that I knew how to make pesto, which had barely landed on our shores in 1972.

      In fact I’d READ about pesto, and in order to taste it I had to grow basil first, fresh herbs being rare in supermarkets then. Franco asked how I made it, and when I got to “garlic” he flipped! He actually seemed offended.

      The day was full of unusual encounters with odd backwoods kinds of characters who hadn’t been to Boston in thirty years and planned to wait another thirty before they’d consider going again.

      I liked Franco R very much, and I wish I’d worked with him again.

    • Elizabeth C Burton on May 15, 2020 at 6:03 pm

      Only worked there three years – 1963-1966. Best job I have ever had – Aaron Copeland series, Lotta Lenya, Joan Sutherland, etc. Dave Davis was super as well of everyone else from the secretaries, Greg Harney, Fred B. the two Helens. WGBH was our home – night and day.

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