I first met Nick Rudd several years ago. We were members of TEAM Westport — the town committee on multiculturalism and diversity. Nick’s passion and commitment to making Westport a more welcoming place for all — and for making Westport a better, stronger partner with the less fortunate communities of Fairfield County — was deep, heartfelt and unwavering.
Nick’s thoughtful comments and incisive questions awed me. He was never afraid to tackle an issue the rest of us tiptoed around. He never hesitated to point out how Westport could be a better place to live, and a better neighbor to those not fortunate enough to live here. He managed to simultaneously care about Westport, Fairfield County, our country and the world.
Nick Rudd died yesterday, of complications from cancer. In typical fashion, he kept his many friends and admirers abreast of his struggle by posting eloquently on Caring Bridge, a website that connects friends and families during health crises.
His last entry was on September 5. Nick wrote:
When this journey began, I tried to be very clear that a cure or remission was extremely unlikely. The purpose of the treatments was to extend my time, and I’ve gotten from February through August, a great blessing. Either the disease would progress beyond the capacity of medications or the efficacy of the medications would decrease.
Both things are now happening.
The melanoma team and I have not given up all hope. I am on the last drugs available against metastatic melanoma, we review the impact weekly and I could stay on them for quite a while, provided they help make progress against the disease. They are making some progress, but it’s more like two steps forward and four steps back.
No one knows or can predict how much time I have left. Whatever it is, it’s probably less than I would have said a month or two ago. I could go for several weeks, perhaps even a month or two. The docs are saying, if you have things to say to people or need to clean things up with them, this is the time.
I can’t see everyone who wants to see me. I can’t take phone calls from everyone who calls. I’m sorry. Please use Caring Bridge, another blessing.
I have appreciated every one of your Caring Bridge visits, whether you wrote anything or not. I especially appreciate and value the energy you put into my healing over the months. Thank you.
Love to all.
That was classic Nick Rudd: honest, straightforward, and caring.
I’m honored I got to know him. And I’m grateful for all he did for me, and our town.
(Funeral services will be held on Sunday, September 16, 2012 at 11:00 a.m. at Abraham L. Green & Son Funeral Home, 88 Beach Road in Fairfield. The family will receive visitors at 20 Sea Spray Road in Westport this Sunday, after returning from the cemetery until 7:30 p.m., and on Monday from 5-7 p.m.)