This post was written by Master Po.
Yesterday evening I received a call at my home from the daughter of Bill Shenk (better known as C-Bill on this blog site). She informed me that Bill had passed away yesterday morning from an apparent heart attack at his home. Needless to say I have shed some tears over this news in the past hours and my heart is quite sad. I asked Bill's daughter and wife if they cared if I shared this news with all the people on this blog, as I know Bill had many friends in here. They told me that they would appreciate me doing this. This is very tough to write, but I somehow feel it is the right thing to do.
Until the old I found the old Globe Celtic chat room several years ago, I had never been in a chat room before. It felt strange, but it was nice to find other people who loved the Celtics. Bill was one of the first people I met. Bill and I soon exchanged emails and we got to know each other a bit more via frequent emails and pictures of our families. I found Bill to be a compassionate, open-minded, insightful kind-hearted old soul with a great sense of humor. He certainly loved the Celtics. Bill and I seemed to connect in a good way about life and humor. My wife thought I was absolutely crazy for being in a chat room and exchanging emails and pictures with some guy from Maine. When someone named "C-Bill" called my house for the first time (in Kansas) and asked for "Master Po", my wife thought I had finally lost my mind.
It was C-Bill and Large James who were responsible for changing my original Celtic Blog name from Poker to Master Po. Bill would often call my house during Celtic games and he would always ask for " Po". We laughed about that on several occasions of how strange, but funny that was. Now many people I work with call me "Po". Thank-you Bill for making me laugh, and for giving me a funny name.
Often when Bill would call me about a Celtic game he would first ask about my 12 year-old daughter and how she was doing in school. His heart, as one can easily tell, was always in the right place. I could not see the pre-season games so Bill taped the first two and sent them to me. What a kind and thoughtful man he was. I hardly got to know him, and for that I am very sad.
Bill and I exchanged Christmas cards, gifts, jokes, many e-mails and phone conversations. I even talked with his wife over the phone on several occasions. My own wife and daughter now realize this "connection" for me was real. Bill and I planned to attend our first Celtic game together this next fall, as neither of one of us had ever been to a Celtic game. Again, I am saddened by the loss of a new friendship cut short. The fragility of life is always at hand. I again learned that lesson last night with a sad phone call, and wished it was a lesson I didn't have to re-learn in this way.
It seems quite surreal for me to be writing a short tribute on a Celtic blog site about someone I never physically met, for some other people to read whom I have also never physically met, except for another Celtic friend - Shakster. I thought everyone in here would want to know, and Jeff was kind enough to post this for me. I hope this is all OK to inform you of this sad news in this manner. There are many good people in here it seems, and now we are one short. I wish it were not so.
Although I am still in shock about Bill's passing, I wanted to say to one more time to C-Bill in this public forum thank you for being my Celtic friend, and more importantly for just being my friend. I wish you well on your new journey C-Bill. Peace and Love and may God bless you and your family.
Please feel free to add your well wishes either here or on the message board thread started in his memory: