Posts Tagged 'gary bean'

The poem I read at my father’s funeral service

I had been asked a few times to share this. What better way then to post it here I suppose. I read this pretty much as it’s written. Needless to say some of the points in here were more specific to the audience at the service than to many of you. People laughed. People cried. Most importantly, people were reminded of reasons to appreciate the wonderful man my father was. I love you dad!!!


A life in the life of Gary Bean


You were born into tough times in 1937

And 75 years later you arrive at the pearly gates of heaven


From my understanding your dad left you when you were only six

Raised with your baby sister by a single mom, you had to grow up quick.


I heard you played pond hockey and to cover your shins you used telephone books

Boy oh boy I bet you get more than your share of funny looks


I know that baseball was your other sport and you were a stud on the mound

You won the first game in Cody High School history. That’s a record they can never take down


There is so much proof that you’ve always had an eye for design

Be it Hudson’s windows, Customer’s offices or the amazing art you always did find


You built a strong reputation as someone who got things done

Pretty impressive for a guy who always knew how to have a lot of fun


You played tennis, hockey, softball, golf and were always ready to drive the boat

You would have been a better golfer if they made balls that could actually float


You were married once, then again and one more time just to do it right

I love all of your wives and I think this last one is out of sight.


Your first two children had names that rhymed with Gary

I still think you could have named the other two Mary and Perry


Cary, Terry, Daryl and Ryan all learned so much from you

We will always sense your pride in whatever we do


It doesn’t just stop with children you know

The grandchildren are here and they are on the grow


You’ve got cousins, colleagues and way more than one friend

They all came to celebrate you and not to reflect on your end


You were truly a wise-man with no shortage of wit

Like my bumper sticker said, you were born to bullshit


We all love you GBEAN to move on we shall endeavor

I wish you peace and comfort for now and forever

My family had requested that people interested in showing their support and love of Gary Bean, due so by making a donation to the Detroit Institute of Arts. He loved art and that museum. To date over $3300.00 has been donated in his honor. 

Tribute to my dad who started the largest Herman Miller Office Furniture Dealer in Detroit and Michigan

I’ve been spending too much time with my father in the hospital. Not that the time we have spent has been too much, but him being in the hospital has been. This time spent has had me reflecting on what a great guy my father is.

His beginnings were humble enough. His father left when he was 6 years old and his mother raised he and his younger sister while working full time at GM. While that’s a pretty common story in today’s world, it was a little different in the 1940’s when he was growing up.

He always had an eye for design. That skill landed him a job at the old Hudson’s downtown decorating windows during the holiday season. I’m too young to really recall, but my elders tell me Hudson’s was magical at Christmas time. I like to think my father had a little something to do with that. Maybe Santa agrees, maybe he doesn’t.

He left Hudson’s to work at Silvers. Which in the 1960’s and 1970’s was the office store. I remember spending many a Saturday morning in their store at Telegraph and 12 Mile as a kid. Poor people used to come in on Monday to find their bottle collection missing cuz some rummy little kid “cashed” em in while they were gone. I bet I owe a few of his co-workers like $1.80. With 30 years of interest, it’s probably quite a bit now.

In the late 70’s Silvers and my father hired a brilliant young design talent named Chris Sowers. Shortly thereafter the Silver’s brothers had a “falling out”. When those two split, my father and Chris joined one of them to start a new company called Office Resource. I managed to collect a lot of bottles there too.

Time went on and my father and Chris left the Silver’s brother and started their own thing. By the late 80’s they had become a Herman Miller powerhouse. They went through a few name revisions and were merged with another dealer or two over time.

By the early 90’s they had settled on the name Facility Matrix Group and found their home on 555 Friendly St. Although my father retired in 2000, the business still continues to grow year over year.

FMG is now the largest Herman Miller office furniture dealer in Michigan. Based on the good work by Chris, David Daugherty, Nigel Addison and the rest of their team they win amazing office furniture and interior design projects like the work they did at Rock FinancialImage

And the now world famous Madison Building.


This past week I was given the opportunity to work with FMG and help them with digital marketing. I’m excited to report I’ve come a long way since collecting bottles. I think my dad will be proud.