Grandpa Clarke, 1920-2010

Last night, surrounded by his loved ones, my grandfather passed away.

I think a lot of my love for collecting came from him. While I was growing up, his greatest passion was antique prints, but over the years he’d also collected baseball cards, books, and yes, toys. He had a number of old toy cars–pre-Hot Wheels, mostly from Britain–and a little diecast fighter plane I found fascinating as a kid, which he gave to me years ago.

Regarding the picture above–Grandpa always had a particular fondness for Master of the Universe. I remember digging out some of my He-Man stuff when I was in high school and giving it to him, and for years Castle Grayskull stood in his room. And two of my most vivid toy-related memories–receiving the Millennium Falcon, and getting Orko–happened at my grandparents’ house in Weymouth.

Grandpa lived to age 90–a long, full life. He is survived by his wife, four children, eight grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren. Rest in peace, Grandpa.