Our dear accountant Harvey Soolman passed away on May 13th, 2018. President Jacky Keith shares a message in remembrance.
Esplanade Travel was Harvey’s home for so many years. We hired Harvey as a bookkeeper over 12 years ago, but got so much more. He took the time to really get to know each one of us and make a real connection. It was different for everyone. Kit remembers how his eyes would change when he told her he’d just come back from sitting on the rocks up in Rockport, his favorite place, and watching the ocean. He would always check in on Rocky, Kit’s wonderful dog, regardless of whether he was in the office or not. And usually he was!
With Diane he shared a love of the theater and she remembers he was a fountain of cinema knowledge and loved cartoons – Looney Tunes in particular. He was so happy that a scene in his comedic play about the insurance industry was performed to great acclaim at a festival recently. Diane was amazed that he was such a creative guy for an accountant!
Tess who had the first ‘Esplanade baby’ in a long time this year, says that Harvey was very sweet and thoughtful while she was pregnant and once Genevieve was born. He always asked after her and asked when she would be coming in the office. He also gave Tess a sweet gift for her – a lamb hand puppet which will be so fun to play with her as she grows up.
Jill and Harvey spoke about horses. He would email Jill after his lesson and they would chat about his progress and the fact he loved being with Pandora and later with Rocket. To start riding lessons when he did is extraordinary. He couldn’t wait to canter and did so on his last lesson.
Bill and Harvey had many chats about the people he was helping. A close friend – he just did really good things and cared about people without expecting anything in return. They shared a true friendship and Bill still has a hard time walking past his office door. They would have regular talks about sports in particular.
Harvey and I talked baseball. We had a mutual love for the game and would trade compliments or complaints about the latest Sox game. I learned of his love for Ted Williams and could understand as I saw Ted Williams hit a home run on my first visit to Fenway Park in the 1950’s when we had just arrived from England. Having grown up with cricket, I found baseball the fastest game in the world! We would exchange baseball related gifts on birthdays. Baseball season gave way to other sports but they never compared. He said once – Oh Jacky, golf is even more sillier than soccer! He would send little email one-liners to put a smile on our faces – he said (I didn’t know this) that Take Me Out to the Ballgame was written about a woman.
One of my favorites from Harvey is: “The café where I had breakfast this morning had the Liverpool/Tottenham match on, and I think I realized the problem with soccer. They’re playing it all wrong. I bet if you shook things up and applied some Red Auerbach and Bill Belichick and focused on a plan of fast breaks and free safeties – not to mention a little Bobby Orr – that then we’d be getting someplace!”
Harvey was a treasure who left us far too soon.