ASL Bell Tolls

RRschultze

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Gentlemen, it is my sad duty to inform you the Joe Arthur has now passed.
We were concerned that no one had heard from him in the last week so I contacted the police who reported they "knew where he was". This gave me some reassurance. Regrettably we heard from his brother today that he had died of a pulmonary embolism brought on by a deep vein thrombosis.
This news arrived half way through the first round at Bounding Fire. It makes it seem so pointless now.
Joe will be much missed from our Friday Night Fight group as well as his polite and cheerful interjections through other games.
His mum died earlier this year so at least they will both be together now.

Goodbye Joe.
This has come as a complete shock to me, as I had been talking to Joe a couple of days before his passing.We were due to play J159 Tropic Lightning at BF Blackpool and as typical, Joe arranged a ‘cheeky play through’ with one of our regular Friday Night ASL’ers, to get a grasp of the scenario and to ensure he would give me a good game.

Joe was a former accountant and as I am one we frequently discussed the financial industry in a good lighthearted manner. I found him to be a really pleasant guy, good humour and generous as well. I remember a time when we were at BF away at Blackpool and I noticed he had a stand to put his charts on. ( see Dave Ramsey photo) I asked him where he got the stand from and he graciously gave me a spare one he had with him.

Always pleasant and a pleasure to play with apart from his habit to place prep fire/defensive fire counters etc on your VASL warriors, which I would always gently ‘slap’ his hands. He loved his ‘kill stacks’ with HMG/MMG’s and as Rich Domovic mentioned in his post the ‘casino roulette’ comments around CC.

Rest in peace Joe and thank you for all the great games
 

Houlie

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Very sad to hear. My condolences to his family and friends.

I never met Joe, but the kind words from so many shows what a loss his passing creates. It reminds me of the frailty of life and how we can impact this world by sowing kindness to those around us. It is clear many ASLers have been blessed by knowing him. Rest in peace, Joe.
 

ulrics

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Thanks Dave for sharing that excellent photo. I don't think Joe and I ever played a game, but I remember his voice and character as being warmly direct and open-hearted, he was a delight to chat with. RIP my good man and I hope the gaming is still good on the other side. Condolences to the family for the sudden loss.
 

Meeduluk

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I played Joe in a recent tourney and I think it might be the only time when I enjoyed getting beat at ASL. I was drained by my previous three games with players not known for their hastiness. Joe was a player who did not faff around – he just got on with it - which was a refreshing experience…he was on the back foot until the endgame when he masterfully pulled the win out of the bag. 👍
 

Sparafucil3

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I want to take a moment to say every time I send out an email, I look at the statistics from the last email and the changes that have occurred in my readership. I noticed today that Joe Arthur has been unsubscribed from my blog. This is the first one he has ever missed. It will be the the first time he ever failed to reach out to me and provide feedback. Seeing him unsubscribed makes me very sad all over again. Funny how things can hit you like that out of the blue. Gone but not forgotten. -- jim
 

BattleSchool

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Joe was a kind and gentle soul. ...There was a sadness about Joe. He could find moments of joy but true happiness always seemed to escape him. Perhaps Joe was too empathetic for this world. I will miss chatting with Joe. I will miss spending time even if it was only over the Internet. He always had something interesting to say and a unique take on things. I hope where ever he is, he has at last found happiness and comfort. I am glad I got a chance to meet him. I am better for knowing him. 😢 -- jim
Just learned this unexpected news.

Joe and I first "met" when we were paired during the second round of the Bounding Fire tourney in 2020. He was incredibly polite and gentlemanly throughout our frenzied playing of "Kiss of Fury," which went down to the last CC. I admired his play and was drawn to his measured temperament. He kindly agreed to another game. In all, we played 15 games in 2020 and 2021. We last chatted over Skype in January 2022 during what would be our final match, "Twilight's Last Gleaming," no less. Joe had the Germans. His war-weary voice betrayed him. He needed to slow down, take a break. I sensed it wasn't just ASL, that something else was going on. I was aware that his mother was unwell. He said as much after returning from BF and relieving one of his sister's of caregiving duties. We corresponded a bit more in early 2022 before I took a break from playing ASL.

Joe and I talked often about his trips to tourneys on the continent. It sounded exciting to someone who has yet to sample the Euro ASL scene firsthand as he had done. (Sleeping in one's car during a tourney was less thrilling.) But his recounting of events was melancholic at best. This seemed to mirror (his) life in the faded seaside town where he resided with his mum. The world, or at least his world, had lost much of its lustre. This, I thought, was reflected in his waning enthusiasm for more than just ASL. At times he seemed quite despondent. But he was always the epitome of good manners with me. If he grew tired of a match, for instance, he would politely say as much and we would reschedule without fuss.

I miss our chats over Skype. Joe was a fine ASL sparring partner. He was also enigmatic. I never could understand why he seemed to take the plight of the wider world so personally. He was genuinely saddened by the societal decay he saw around him, the decline and shuttering, perhaps, of an earlier life. Something in his demeanour told me not to press, and I tread carefully when he opened up a little about his personal affairs. When we disagreed on non-ASL matters, and we disagreed a lot during our 100+ hours on Skype, he chided me gently. He was more mature than I in such matters. He never angered. Nor, sadly, did he laugh much. Admittedly, that may have had more to do with my poor attempts at humour than his lack thereof.

I'm saddened to hear that Joe is no longer with us. But I'm heartened to hear that so many have been touched by his gentle nature. Farewell Joe!
 

Actionjick

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Just learned this unexpected news.

Joe and I first "met" when we were paired during the second round of the Bounding Fire tourney in 2020. He was incredibly polite and gentlemanly throughout our frenzied playing of "Kiss of Fury," which went down to the last CC. I admired his play and was drawn to his measured temperament. He kindly agreed to another game. In all, we played 15 games in 2020 and 2021. We last chatted over Skype in January 2022 during what would be our final match, "Twilight's Last Gleaming," no less. Joe had the Germans. His war-weary voice betrayed him. He needed to slow down, take a break. I sensed it wasn't just ASL, that something else was going on. I was aware that his mother was unwell. He said as much after returning from BF and relieving one of his sister's of caregiving duties. We corresponded a bit more in early 2022 before I took a break from playing ASL.

Joe and I talked often about his trips to tourneys on the continent. It sounded exciting to someone who has yet to sample the Euro ASL scene firsthand as he had done. (Sleeping in one's car during a tourney was less thrilling.) But his recounting of events was melancholic at best. This seemed to mirror (his) life in the faded seaside town where he resided with his mum. The world, or at least his world, had lost much of its lustre. This, I thought, was reflected in his waning enthusiasm for more than just ASL. At times he seemed quite despondent. But he was always the epitome of good manners with me. If he grew tired of a match, for instance, he would politely say as much and we would reschedule without fuss.

I miss our chats over Skype. Joe was a fine ASL sparring partner. He was also enigmatic. I never could understand why he seemed to take the plight of the wider world so personally. He was genuinely saddened by the societal decay he saw around him, the decline and shuttering, perhaps, of an earlier life. Something in his demeanour told me not to press, and I tread carefully when he opened up a little about his personal affairs. When we disagreed on non-ASL matters, and we disagreed a lot during our 100+ hours on Skype, he chided me gently. He was more mature than I in such matters. He never angered. Nor, sadly, did he laugh much. Admittedly, that may have had more to do with my poor attempts at humour than his lack thereof.

I'm saddened to hear that Joe is no longer with us. But I'm heartened to hear that so many have been touched by his gentle nature. Farewell Joe!
That was a very, very nice post and tribute.
 

BattleSchool

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That was a very, very nice post and tribute.
That's very kind of you to say. I hope I haven't inadvertently misrepresented Joe in the process. Jim's observation that he sensed a certain sadness in Joe fit so well with what I had picked up on that I felt compelled to tease it out a little more. This and Joe's warmheartedness. I'll leave it there.
 

Martin Mayers

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Just learned this unexpected news.

Joe and I first "met" when we were paired during the second round of the Bounding Fire tourney in 2020. He was incredibly polite and gentlemanly throughout our frenzied playing of "Kiss of Fury," which went down to the last CC. I admired his play and was drawn to his measured temperament. He kindly agreed to another game. In all, we played 15 games in 2020 and 2021. We last chatted over Skype in January 2022 during what would be our final match, "Twilight's Last Gleaming," no less. Joe had the Germans. His war-weary voice betrayed him. He needed to slow down, take a break. I sensed it wasn't just ASL, that something else was going on. I was aware that his mother was unwell. He said as much after returning from BF and relieving one of his sister's of caregiving duties. We corresponded a bit more in early 2022 before I took a break from playing ASL.

Joe and I talked often about his trips to tourneys on the continent. It sounded exciting to someone who has yet to sample the Euro ASL scene firsthand as he had done. (Sleeping in one's car during a tourney was less thrilling.) But his recounting of events was melancholic at best. This seemed to mirror (his) life in the faded seaside town where he resided with his mum. The world, or at least his world, had lost much of its lustre. This, I thought, was reflected in his waning enthusiasm for more than just ASL. At times he seemed quite despondent. But he was always the epitome of good manners with me. If he grew tired of a match, for instance, he would politely say as much and we would reschedule without fuss.

I miss our chats over Skype. Joe was a fine ASL sparring partner. He was also enigmatic. I never could understand why he seemed to take the plight of the wider world so personally. He was genuinely saddened by the societal decay he saw around him, the decline and shuttering, perhaps, of an earlier life. Something in his demeanour told me not to press, and I tread carefully when he opened up a little about his personal affairs. When we disagreed on non-ASL matters, and we disagreed a lot during our 100+ hours on Skype, he chided me gently. He was more mature than I in such matters. He never angered. Nor, sadly, did he laugh much. Admittedly, that may have had more to do with my poor attempts at humour than his lack thereof.

I'm saddened to hear that Joe is no longer with us. But I'm heartened to hear that so many have been touched by his gentle nature. Farewell Joe!
Great words friend!

I offered him a spare room at Double One this year due to a friend cancelling following the loss his father (stressing that it was "paid for anyway") and he refused, opting instead (I guess) to sleep in his car. I find that incredibly sad. I was on my own there oft-times and I do feel we would have had a nice time.

I'll admit now, with the passage of a little time, that Joe used to grind my gears a little bit. But I warmed to him. I said to my good friends Ian Morris and Simon Staniforth on many occasions that I found him a really engaging and pleasant guy away from the game. I have to admit I feel a little less for having had some enmity towards him. I doubt it was reciprocal.

But, all that said, on the whole I have more good memories of the grumbly old fucker than I have bad.

I'm sadly drifting away from this hobby a little bit. But I will always miss characters like Joe, The Mad Vet, Ian Daglish Big Trev, and many others who fell by the wayside
 

Actionjick

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Great words friend!

I offered him a spare room at Double One this year due to a friend cancelling following the loss his father (stressing that it was "paid for anyway") and he refused, opting instead (I guess) to sleep in his car. I find that incredibly sad. I was on my own there oft-times and I do feel we would have had a nice time.

I'll admit now, with the passage of a little time, that Joe used to grind my gears a little bit. But I warmed to him. I said to my good friends Ian Morris and Simon Staniforth on many occasions that I found him a really engaging and pleasant guy away from the game. I have to admit I feel a little less for having had some enmity towards him. I doubt it was reciprocal.

But, all that said, on the whole I have more good memories of the grumbly old fucker than I have bad.

I'm sadly drifting away from this hobby a little bit. But I will always miss characters like Joe, The Mad Vet, Ian Daglish Big Trev, and many others who fell by the wayside
None of us are angels. Dealing with that can be difficult at times.
 

Chas

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I received a text late last night. Very sad news. Bruce was an instrumental part of the BFP resurgence back in 2007-08. He was a kind man and very meticulous in anything he worked on.
 

william.stoppel

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I hate that we have this thread...

It is my sad duty to report that I just learned that Bruce Kirkaldy passed away on Thursday this week. Rest in peace, Bruce...😪

Semper Fi!
Scott
Very sorry to hear of Bruce’s passing I always enjoyed talking Budapest with him and playtesting his scenarios. Jim and I were just talking about him last month at the Bellfountain club meeting.
 
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