Suicide is a tough subject to discuss but it is one that needs to be talked about – by people considering it and by the loved ones who need to carry on after they lose people who decided to take their lives. This is a quote from my guest this week that sums that up very well, he is talking about his family and his brother Bruce, who took his life at the age of 23. “The family had begun to realize that even though Bruce’s battle was over, their had just begun.”
Join, art dealer and suicide prevention advocate, Carl David and I for a discussion about his experiences and his book Bader Field, How My Family Survived Suicide. Like many of my guests, things that happened early in his life, moved him to find a mission in his life that eventually brought him to my show.
If you missed the show, click below for the replay.
Here are some of the questions we will discuss –
- “Bader Field How My Family Survived Suicide” began as a memoir, homage to your father, but you say it became a much more important work. Can you exp
- Did your brother exhibit any odd behavior that would make you think something was amiss?
- Did you or your family have any clue to your brother’s state of emotional torment?
- Any note left or information that was discovered afterward?
- How did you and your family handle this trauma?
- How did you get over it?
- Was writing your book cathartic in a sense?
- How long did it take you to complete the book?
- When your brother took his life; you were sixteen, he was barely twenty three. You lived through it as a brother and a son. As a father now, how has your perspective changed?
- Suicide has some stunning statistics. Can you give us some insight on them?
- You say you want to “Pay It Forward.” What is it that you hope to do?
- What is your message and how do you anticipate getting it out there?
- Whom would you like to reach with your message?
About Bader Field, How My Family Survived Suicide
Mr. David’s new book, Bader Field, embodies the emotional story of a son’s loving relationship with his father―a legendary art dealer whose life is suddenly taken by a massive coronary at the young age of fifty-eight years. His death plunges the twenty-four-year-old man onto the front lines of the family art business, which he had entered a mere three years prior. Battling with his own grief while trying to help his adoring but fragile mother survive, David forges forward with all of the elemental tools his father imparted to him. His journey proves a difficult one, not having yet recovered from the horrific loss of his brother to suicide just eight years earlier when he was found dead on the fourth floor of the Rittenhouse Square townhouse, which was home to the prestigious David David Gallery. His self-imposed obligation is to successfully take the family art business to the next generation and to give his own children every bit of love, kindness, and wisdom bestowed upon him by the unique man whom they will never know other than the mark he left on everyone who knew him. Bader Field adds significant insight into the mysterious workings and dealings of the art world. David speaks from experience of having been immersed in it all of his life and having lived it from the inside out. There will be a tremendous crossover interest in this book as it combines the elements of an American family, its goodness and its tragedy interfaced with the multifaceted aspects of the art business and flying small airplanes. Bader Field in Atlantic City was the oldest airfield in the country. With little sophistication, its two asphalt runways juggled single and twin engine aircraft exuded a character and charm that created memories to last a lifetime. That is where this saga begins and where it ends as life comes full circle.
Thoughts From Carl David
It is my hope that “Bader Field” will help those who have had less than ideal fathers growing up to break the chain of negative influence and become much better fathers themselves when it is their turn to assume the role.
An even greater aspiration for me is that this book reach deep into the mind of anyone who is contemplating taking their life and show them that they are not alone, that there is always another answer, another way, no matter what. Those so desperate need to know that they don’t just destroy themselves, but everyone around them as well; their family, friends and acquaintances. I pray that my perilous journey through those darkest days will bring light and hope to anyone on that final path, and draw them back.
“Bader Field” my latest book was a seedling back in the middle 1960’s, although I had no idea of its inception yet. Life in our family had been idyllic until we suffered an unspeakable family tragedy which changed all of our lives forever in one vile gesture.
It was only decades later that I was focused enough to put “Bader Field” together, although randomly at first as it started mainly as homage to my father so my children would know the greatness of the man who had passed away far too soon.
As the story unfolded, it expanded dramatically and encompassed a far broader perspective to include the horrific loss of my brother. The darkest days of my life needed to be revealed and relived in order to accurately show our family dynamic and how we survived.
It became my hope that the story would give hope, light and love to anyone at that edge of desperation and bring them back from the brink of extinction to the many avenues of help that are available and to show those pained souls that such a final act doesn’t just take their life, but in large measure, those of their loved ones, friends and acquaintances as well.
So my dream was to turn an era of horror into a positive by paying it forward with the aim of saving lives, as many as possible. And for that reason alone, this is a book that must be read and read widely for it crosses all borders and is blind to indifference and bias.
The Far Reaching Effects Of This Book:
“Bader Field” my latest book has been causing an emotional reaction across all lines. Those who have read it all have the same “Wow” response. Stunned, brought to tears and given a glimpse into a whole new realm to which they are drawn inexplicably as the pages turn.
Episodes of art dealing, flying twin engined airplanes and a family’s survival are a consistent theme throughout the story. The David family comes to life from the first page and grows more familiar as their depiction is vividly animated. You will know them quite well, as if in life you had and they will tug at your heart with compassion, love and warmth with a sense of realism you will actually feel.
Family members, friend and strangers alike have been riveted to “Bader Field”. Once started they cannot put it down, except to clear their heads and take a break from it’s overwhelming strength and hypnotic pull. “I can see the movie” the refrains echo. “I feel like I knew your family,” they acknowledge. “How did you do it?” they puzzle and shake their heads.
Yes, a dream has been born with the release of this book and its path will soar. “Bader Field” is one of those phenomena that will take on a life of its own like the kite caught in an updraft pulling skyward with no visible limitation. Once launched, there was no turning back and I am so proud that the world is now able to read it and covet the story within its embrace.