Karl

Karl and Z in Greg's front yard years ago.
Karl Ackerman and Z in Greg’s front yard years ago.

Karl David Ackerman passed away on the evening of Monday, October 24, 2016, at the age of 61, after a long struggle with cancer. Born on July 27, 1955, in Washington, D.C., he spent his childhood abroad in Norway, Thailand, and Taipei, as part of a Foreign Service family. He attended Walter Johnson High School in Bethesda, Maryland, the University of Maryland, and Boston College, where he earned a B.A. in political science. His deep love of books and reading led him to a job at Barnes and Noble when it first opened in Boston, and then to the Savile Bookshop in Washington, D.C., where he met Jennifer Gorham. They married in 1980 and lived together in New Haven, New York, Washington, D.C., Cabin John, Maryland, and Lewes, Delaware, where Karl wrote his first novel, The Patron Saint of Unmarried Women. The couple moved to Charlottesville in 1992. A second novel, Dear Will, was published soon after. Writing fiction was Karl’s passion throughout his life. For the past 15 years, he also worked in business with his brother John. Renowned for his dedication to public engagement, Karl spent many hours laboring on behalf of the Charlottesville Public Schools, the Woolen Mills Neighborhood, and the City of Charlottesville. He served for several years on Charlottesville’s Sister City Commission and on the Woolen Mills Neighborhood Association Board. Karl loved telling stories, planting trees, observing birds, making bread, walking along the Rivanna River, playing basketball, watching soccer, “dot” painting in the spirit of Aboriginal art, and loving his family deep and well. As his close friend and fellow novelist Lisa Howorth wrote, “He was kind, generous, honest, sensitive, handsome, very smart and perceptive, a good writer, and hilariously funny, and he cared deeply about all people.”Karl is survived by his wife of 36 years, Jenny Ackerman, and his two daughters, Zo Claire Ackerman, 24, and Elinor (“Nelle”) Kathryn Ackerman, 21. We give heartfelt thanks to the many friends, family, and caregivers who helped Karl through his difficult illness and created such a powerful net of love and support for us all. A celebration of Karl’s life will be held at The Haven Sanctuary on Saturday, November 19, 2016,at 10:30 a.m. The address is 112 West Market Street, Charlottesville. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made in Karl’s name to the Hospice of the Piedmont or The Haven.

Branta canadensis

downtown mall
Friday morning, snow quietly begins in Charlottesville
Riverview Park, Saturday.
Saturday was another story. Cold, snow blowing.
I ran into some folk on the Rivanna trail wearing snow shoes.
I ran into some folk on the Rivanna trail wearing snow shoes.
woolen mills chapel
Skiers from Fifeville
playing with gravity
Non-city sanctioned, recreation in the street. My favorite aspect of a snow storm, bipeds reclaim the commons, temporarily people, rule.
C&O CSX Buckingham Bramch
C&O railroad bridge, Moores Creek. Anyone know what year this was built?
snow load
Woolen Mills roofs, Alexander, Milby, Hudson, Timberlake…
snow shovelers walk the street
Momentary uptick in entrepreneurial activity.

Riverview

riverview cemetery dawn
THE RIVERVIEW CEMETERY COMPANY was incorporated by a group of local businessmen on December 29, 1892 with a mission to establish a cemetery “near and convenient” to the City of Charlottesville and properly ornamented with “trees, shrubbery or flowers.” In February 1892 the Company made its first land purchase of 27.95 acres from the Charlottesville Land Company for $6,987.50. Riverview continued to amass small quantities of land over the years from neighboring lot owners, residents and the Albemarle Golf Club on its western border. Local residents Henry Clay Marchant, Mrs. M.J. Burgess and J.S. Barksdale purchased the first burial plots on December 6, 1894. Seventeen more were sold between 1894 and 1899, several to board members and officers of the Cemetery Company.–Lara Day Kozak

Rivanna Renaissance

Rivanna River Woolen Mills
“The degradation of the Chesapeake Bay ecosystem took place more than two centuries; it will take more than three decades to reverse. The newly signed Chesapeake Bay Watershed Agreement—with its clear, well-defined and achievable goals and outcomes, its flexibility to respond and adapt to changing conditions and its public engagement—sets the course and provides the watershedwide commitment to get us there.”–Nicholas DiPasquale, Director of the EPA’s Chesapeake Bay Program (left, DiPasquale paddling the Rivanna, October 1)
DiPasquale one of the speakers at today’s Rivanna Renaissance conference.

Tunnel Boring Machine (TBM)

Miss Chelsea
SAK Construction’s TBM, Miss Chelsea is on the move, headed NNE, grinding through 1700+ feet of bedrock, going where no one has gone before.
Interesting boring job.


operator conveyance
Drive to work, ride the man-basket down into the hole, fire up the TBM. How is the machine moved forward? What protective gear does the operator wear? At the moment it’s a horizontal short walk (100+ feet) from the tunnel entrance to Ms. Chelsea. Later on it’ll be longer. Bike to work? What is the lighting like in there? Any chance of a live video feed?

old soldier, Carl D. Proffitt

Chubby fetches the DP
Olive and Chubby built their Woolen Mills house in 1939. I admire his service record. Daily Progress has that story.


2009 Dogwood Festival Parade
Additionally, I admire his persistence, his neighborliness. He always had a kind word. He lived on, beyond Olive, beyond five siblings. It takes a lot of courage to age in place. Chubby Proffitt had courage.