(Video by Marc Lester / Anchorage Daily News)
Until a friend found his body last month outside a Fairview warehouse, Gregory Jack spent decades volunteering and dining just a few blocks away at the Bean’s Cafe. Friends and family gathered Wednesday to mourn the 59-year-old at the soup kitchen.
One of those attending, Art Ivanoff, says he lost his closest friend. The two men, both residents of Karluk Manor, spent time together nearly every day since 2007. Ivanoff — who Jack nicknamed “Big Man” — says after Bean’s closed they would often walk Anchorage streets and share a bottle of liquor. Now that has friend is gone, Ivanoff says, he’s thinking more about quitting drinking.
Ivanoff told the audience about Jack’s generous spirit and big heart. In this Alcohol & Me video, on adn.com, Ivanoff describes their friendship and the aftershocks of Jack’s death on Bean’s Cafe.
“Since then I’ve had a few dreams where I see him. Then I’d wake up. I didn’t see him. I’d see shadows. Maybe it’s him watching over me. Maybe it isn’t. I still think he’s there. I still think he’ll always be there watching over me. And I’ll never forget him.”
Originally published April 3, 2014 by Marc Lester in Anchorage Daily News.