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San Francisco Gay Pride Parade

July 25th, 2006

An Era Passing
Tuesday. An email from MRB today describing Jack Jaxon's death, evidently at his own hand at the age of sixty-five in Texas. “...he prepaid a funeral, drove to Stockdale, and shot himself on his parent's grave.”

Jack was the art director of the Family Dog and one of the four founders of the Rip Off Press when MRB and I arrived in San Francisco on our way to Mexico in MRB's Microbus in the summer of 1969. I remembered his work in The Texas Ranger at the University of Texas at Austin when it was edited by Gilbert Shelton in the 60's and made it a point to look him up in the phone book at a hole in the wall grocery store in North Beach when we arrived, meeting him later at the Family Dog where we introduced ourselves and talked art and life for maybe an hour over sandwiches. My introduction to San Francisco.

He and Beatrice lived across from the Rip Off Ranch on Arkansas Street on Potrero Hill during the 70's during the years I lived at the Ranch and worked at the Rip Off Press. I knew Jaxon reasonably well, developing a lot of respect for the man as well as the artist. He was an original. I wish it hadn't been suicide. You have to be hurting to choose suicide. Part of an era passing.

The photograph was taken at the San Francisco Gay Pride Parade with a Nikon D2x mounted with a 70-200mm 2.8 Nikkor VR lens at 1/320th, f 2.8, ISO 100.