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Peggy Silberthau Remembers

Hexum Memorial Service: Classmate and fellow Student Council Member Peggy Silberthau 

I remember meeting Jack for the first time -- when we were juniors in high school.  he was full of spirit and raring to start our senior year -- determined to make the class of 1976 the best ever.  In the ten and a half years of our friendship, we saw each other change, but Jack always retained that drive to do his best at everything he tried.
I wanted to take this opportunity to mention some of my menories of Jack -- particularly those that many of you here tonight can relate to in some way.
I remember getting together with high school friends when we were home from college during breaks, and tryng to act "older than high school", but still doing crazy things.
I remember having quiet discussions with Jack about morals, ethics, goals and ambitions, or being less serious and playing on the swings or feeding the ducks at the Commons in Tenafly.
I remember him talking about visiting my roommates and I at college, with the entire Michigan State football team -- thank goodness he didn't!

I remember going out in New York two days before he left for California.  He went West with lots of ambition to fulfill his dream of becoming an actor and a great sense of uncertainty.
I remember visiting him in California, spending time on the set of "Voyagers!" and being the only one who called him Jack instead of Jon-Erik.
I remember this past spring watching Jack as a guest star on the TV show "Hotel" with a group of Tenafly classmates including Jack.  We all commented that it reminded us of the movie "The Big Chill" -- but that we were brought together by happiness and friendship.
I remember his stories about Hollywood and the so-called glamour, often lacking, but rather the long days of hard work and constant perseverance.
I remember waking up a week ago Monday on what would have been Jack's 27th birthday and feeling empty that I couldn't call or send a card.
We all have memories of one sort or another.  And I am convinced that it is these cherished thoughts that will help us through the pain.  There are many moments when I can't believe he's gone, many tears wept and yet to be shed.  But, Jack would have wanted us to remember the good and realize that we must go on.
To millions of Americans he was Jon-Erik Hexum, Phineas Bogg in the "Voyagers!", a real hunk in "The Making of a Male Model", and Mac Harper in the CBS series "Cover Up".  He would have been other characters in many more roles had he had the chance.  To most of us here, he was much more than a star in the public eye.  He was a peer, a classmate, a neighbor, a leader, a doer, and a friend -- someone we loved very much.  As we recognize the loss, we must concentrate on our feelings for him.  Those feelings we can keep in our hearts forever.  We can savor our memories and be glad that he touched our lives and made the world a little bit brighter.
--- Peggy D. Silberthau
Memorial Service for Jack Hexum
Thursday, November 15, 1984
United Methodist Church of Demarest
Demarest, New Jersey

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