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My Visit With Eric


Wednesday, August 04, 2004

I never expected to feel the peace Ifelt when I pulled into Cedar Hill Cemetery to see where EricCarr was buried. It is a beautiful place up in the mountains.I knew the mausoleum was closed, but I wanted to take the driveso I knew where I was going when I go tomorrow. When I pulledinto the parking lot in front of the mausoleum, my heart was filledwith an overwhelming feeling of pure serenity. I just sat fora while listening to the radio and just as John Lennon's Imaginecame on, my voice mail beeped. It was one of my KISS sisters.sowe laughed and we cried a little. I walked around the buildingto see if I could see his name through the window, but I couldn't.That will have to wait until tomorrow. I did find a pine coneby where I was parked that I picked up.a reminder of the peaceand serenity I found.


Thursday, August 6, 2004

How do you write about a day full ofmoments that you know happened yet are still hard to believe?All night they were predicting rain, thunderstorms, and flooding.I was afraid it was going to make me have to change my plans togo see Eric. In one of the last emails I sent a friend, I said"If he wants me to come see him, he will make the sun comeout tomorrow." When I woke up, the sky was gloomy and grey.As I looked out the window as the morning wore on, the skies startedto brighten up. When it was time for my drive, the sky had turnedthe brightest shade of blue I have ever seen. I knew I was meantto go. I had a classic rock station on and they played so manyof my favorite songs, I lost count. I sang the whole hour driveto Newbourgh. When I finally reached Cedar Hill Cemetery, I wasfilled with a joy and an overwhelming feeling of love I couldn'texplain. I took my 2 silk roses (1 red and 1 white) that I hadtied together with white satin ribbon and attached my letter Ihad written Eric. As crazy as it sounds, the mausoleum was a beautifulplace. I guess it would have to be in order to be the final restingplace for such a beautiful soul. I got turned around at first(yes, even with great directions), but as I wondered, I saw hewas surrounded by so many other beautiful people. Their familiesand loved ones had let pictures, poems, flowers, balloons andletters. The building was filled with true unconditional love,the same love Eric had for all of his fans, those he had met,and those like me that had not gotten the pleasure of meetinghim, but he had still touched so deeply. As I turned the lastcorner, I saw his family name on the wall, Caravello and underthat it said Eric Carr. For a moment, it took my breathe away.I sat down on the chair right across from it and tried to takeit all in. I looked down at the collection of things that hadbeen left for him: a hand drawn picture of KISS from a young child,a framed photo of Eric in his Fox makeup, a collage of picturesof Eric around a letter of thanks and another one with a poem,all left by KISS fans who had come here too. I added my gift,then sat for a while. I took a picture of his stone and the beautifulgifts that had been left for him.


I knew it was time to leave as much asI didn't want to. I thought how it would be nice if I could comesit here when I just needed to clear my head. I touched his name,whispered that I love him and headed towards the car. I was notquite ready to head for the airport yet. I had read a sign thenight before about an art glass gallery an exit away from Ericon my way towards the airport. I wanted to pick up something specialfor me that would always remind me of Eric (like the tattoo onmy ankle isn't enough). So I drove into the most adorable littletown. I parked right behind Hudson Beach Glass Studio. I lookedaround a little at my surroundings and across the street was alittle tea shop, the perfect place to eat before I headed home.I went into the gallery and watched the artists blow glass fora while and then I went to look for my treasures. I am wearingmy KISS Creatures shirt to Charlotte for the expo Sunday and ithappens to have some of the prettiest blues in it (kind of likethe color of the sky Eric had given me). So what was more fittingthan blue glass earrings and a bracelet, then I headed over tothe tea shop. It was beautiful way to pamper myself, to celebratethe beauty in what I had experienced today, most fitting was thehouse special "tea party for one".ok, Eric was withme in spirit, but he didn't need lunch. I enjoyed my tea sandwicheson beautiful dishes with strawberry/kiwi ice tea, and a sconewith jelly. I felt like a pampered little girl for that hour Igave myself. The meal was exquisite. As always, all good thingsmust end (why is that again??) and I needed to get back on theroad. They sent me away with my slice of cheesecake (thanks Eric..Ididn't need that). I went back to my car and took a few picturesof the town and suddenly my camera says "disk full".I took that as a sign it was time to go.


The closer I got to the airport, thecloudier the skies became. Eric had given me the perfect afternoonand now he was sending me home. As I got outside to board my plane,it finally started to rain. Were they Eric's tears sorry to seeme go mixed with tears of joy that I had come, I'd like to thinkit was. As I sit on in the plane miles above the ground writingthis, I am once again seeing the bluest skies I have ever seen,and a few thoughts and reflections remain with me.

To all my KISS Sisters and special KISSArmy friends:Dream Big, Eric always did, otherwise its not worthdreaming.


This Great fan photo's are of MicheleSmith, in Eric Carr Makeup. Michele is a huge Eric Carr fan ,along with her husband Robin and young son Chris, who alreadyhas a huge kit and hopes one day to play like his Idol Eric Carr.Chris who is under 10 years old is already keeping beat with
Eric's Solo's GO CHRIS!.


One of the best night's I've had was meeting Eric Carr. Mygirlfriend & I
used to hanging at the club in Queen's called "L'amour East"where Eric would
drop by. At first when I saw Eric at the club I was hesitant toapproach Eric,
because I didn't want to bother him. I did get the nerve to talkto Eric and
I asked him if it was alright to ask you a couple of questions.Eric's
repley, as long as it doesn't turn into an interview. I knew whatEric meant, so I
kept it nice and short. Eric is deeply missed and Eric's memorywill live on




Eric Carr was by far the best drummer Kiss ever saw. I've beenplaying the drums since 1969 and I've seen my share of good drummers.One piece of my Kiss collection is the Australia 1980 show. Iam still amazed on how much Eric sounded like Peter Criss whenhe sang Black Diamond and how great his drum solo was during thatshow. I've seen Kiss play live since 1977 with every drummer todate and Eric smokes them all. I love Peter but he was nowherenear the technician that Eric Carr was. I regret two things. First,not seeing a show while Eric was in makeup, and second, not meetingEric in person to tell him how great he is and how he was thebest musician in the band. I've met Gene Simmons many times, andI have a large Kiss collection. None of that really matters though.What matters is that me and millions of others still miss EricCarr and the happiness and joy he brought to people around theworld.

Steven Hoffmaster
Culver City, California


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