Parting Johnny Thunders

The funeral. I guess that was the end and the beginning all at once. I was at home when big Tony C called and told me. I had been called over the years with "I heard John's dead" and I even got a call from the local radio station on Long Island telling me of his demise but it was all rumor and nothing more. When I got the call from Tony I knew that it was real. I had just gotten up from a deep sleep so it felt like a dream. It wasn't. John was in New Orleans and you all know how that went.

The last time I was with John we had left on bad terms, arguing about nothing. Believe me, that's not the way to leave friends because you never know when you'll get the opportunity to straighten out the argument and it may be to late. It was a stupid fight but I never got the chance to make it right. After all those years we never saw each other again.

When I got to the funeral parlor on a Sunday afternoon, nobody was there. The funeral director let me in and I saw him quiet and still. It was too late to make up but I spoke my piece and I'm sure he understood. The moral of the story is never part mad with your friends if they really are your friends because you never know when you will see them again to make it right.

Many people came to his wake over the next two days, Joe Perry, Steven Tyler, Bebe Buell and all the people that were truly the ones who cared. These are the people that no one would have heard about, not the famous ones, just the people who did care. Jerry Nolan said it the best at the cemetery: "Today I'm the the most lonely guy in the world. A part of me is gone and I never got a chance to say how I felt." Walter, Tony, David and the rest of us just left the cemetery and all agreed that the world lost something special that made it possible for us to have a hundred great bands that would had never been if it wasn't for one little wiseass from Queens. I love you and miss you John, as do others you touched.

Bobby Belfiore

Bobby B. worked as the soundman for the Heartbreakers and Gang War during the late 1970s and most of the 1980s.

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Modified: May 14, 2001