by Sharon Kisselburg Peake
(Salt Lake City, UT)
Orval The Clown
My cute dad passed away in March of 08. He was a daredevil clown who brought joy to so many people across the US and Canada. He was a stunt man and loved to make people smile and laugh. Words are not enough to express the huge hole he has left in so many lives.
He was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig's disease in 1982, but lived on for 26 years. He was truly amazing.
From 1996 until his passing he lived alone and mostly took care of himself. He loved to garden and cook, he had many friends and loved to spend time with his great grand kids.
For his memorial service I created a personal program with some of his clown pictures on it. There was singer and accompaniest who performed "My Way" because my dad always said, he lived his life exactly how he wanted - thus he did it his way. I also found a Bobbi Darin song I felt was quite fitting. "The Curtain Falls"... It starts out, "Off comes the make up, off comes the clowns disguise. The curtain's falling, the music slowly dies. But I hope your smiling as your filing out the door. As they say in this Biz, that's all there is, there isn't any more."
It was the perfect ending song for him.