Dear friend was the ‘pop up’ king


To the editor:

Oberlin has had a lot of interesting and different people from its very beginnings. Charles “Charlie” Startup was one of those people.

Charlie was a friend and mental health colleague for over 40 years. At Charlie’s memorial service, several people mentioned how Charlie would just “appear” or “pop up.” He was very good at appearing and popping up.

Years ago I had an office where my desk faced an alley window. I would look up from the desk and there was Charlie, elbows on the window ledge, staring at me. “Charlie, you just scared the daylights out of me,” I’d say (or something close to that. “How long have you been there?” Just a quizzical smile back. Months could go by and then the pop-up man would appear again.

Oberlin is blessed with many Charlie pop-ups. I miss him and wouldn’t be surprised if he appeared and popped up suddenly and unexpectedly.

Donald L. Spencer

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