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R.I.P. Bernie

This is probably the wrong way to do this, so please forgive me. My good friend Bernie Hackett – who I “met” here on iModeler, passed away this past Monday, May 14. Bernie was a long-time iModeler guy who was full of fun, good humour, and a LOT of knowledge. He may not have done many models here, but he joked that his stash kept growing and he’d get to it soon. Just like me. I began talking with him by phone alittle over a year ago and have referred to him as my “Brother from another Mother.” I never got to Baltimore to meet my friend, but I will miss him very much. I thank iModeler because I would never have “known” Bernie had we not “met” here.

We will miss you, Bernard E. Hackett, Jr!

76 responses to R.I.P. Bernie

  1. Sad news indeed….thanks for letting us know – he’ll be missed.

  2. I am so deeply saddened and shocked by this, Jeff. Bernard encouraged lots of this community and his engagement and love of people really shone through his words here. I know you’d been speaking to him by telephone as both of you had a string of personal messages with me, and prompted me to start thinking about planning a trip to see some of my friends and ‘brothers’.

    We never know how late it is. We just sometimes don’t realise.

    I am so deeply sorry to hear this, but glad you have shared the news with us, Jeff. My thoughts (and prayers) are with his family and you.

    Rest in peace, friend.

    • David and all our other iMod friends,
      It has taken me most of the day to collect my thoughts enough to reply to all the great comments here. I’ve never known a man quite like Bernie. He had a great wit and as others have also noted, he also had a wealth of knowledge. I enjoyed talking with him about the museum where he volunteered. The museum often received donations of items ranging from book collections to great collections of old Air Classics magazines, from pilot logbooks to models (both assembled and not) and even sheets of old decals. It was his job to sort through those donations and find use for as much as could be used.
      We always could share an old modeling story or tip, we had many “old war stories” but we really talked of anything and everything. Jokes, tricks, puns, religion and even occasionally – politics, though not often. We could solve all the problems of the country or the world or anything else we cared to talk about. We had all the answers … except the ones about health. However, Bernie didn’t dwell on his issues, rather, he put his faith in a higher power and took each day as it came, living them as best he could. Every time we talked, we ended our conversation with my favorite phrase; “Every day above ground is a good one.” Well, Bernie sure helped ME have a lot of “good days” with his wonderful wit and great cheer. He had a zest for life and he loved learning about new things. I think that’s one of the reasons we got along so well. If I could have had a Big Brother, I would want him to be just like Bernie.

      R.I.P. Bernie.

  3. We will miss him… Sad news.

  4. Thanks for letting us know Jeff, and also for the tribute to the modeling community fostered and hosted by iModeler. What a great way to get to know a bunch of wild, creative, unique individuals from all over the world, who share a niche interest. It’s fun to be able to share a slice of our inner world with others with whom our musings and activities resonate!

    Bernie (and his comments) will be missed. And the rest of you (and your comments) will be more highly appreciated.

  5. I am deeply saddened by the news of Bernie’s passing !! I also befriended him via iModeler. We often exchanged information about our hobby and his tour in Vietnam. He was a true people’s person that was very willing to share his wealth of knowledge with anyone. He will be missed by all that knew him even those of us that only ever communicated with him via e-mails.

  6. Very sad news. Bernie was a huge part of this community here at imodeler. I only recently spoke to him via p.m and he was a pleasure to chat with. You will be missed Bernie. R.I.P pal.

  7. Very sad to hear. He was one of my first friends here and often got feedback from him. My next build will be tribute to him. You will be missed Bernie.

  8. I’m very sorry to hear this news. He always had a good word and will be missed.

  9. Sad news, he will be greatly missed by many of us.
    Jeff, announcing this here is probably the most appropriate way to break the news of Bernard passing away as many of us came to know him even if we never met in real life.

  10. This is such sad news, and thanks Jeff for letting us know, Please pass on my sincerest condolences to his family, he will certainly be missed here on I Modeler.

  11. My cordial condolence, Jeff.
    He was active here at iModeler only four days back.

  12. He will be missed. Rest in peace.

  13. This is sad news. My condolences Jeff. He will be truly missed.

  14. Not the wrong way Jeff. If you hadn’t said something everyone would just be wondering where Bernie was. Bye Bernie.

  15. Oh my God.. That is indeed sad news to hear. I had talked to him on the phone several times and we have e-mailed numerous times. He has a son that lives in CA a few towns south of me and we always talked of going to a particular hamburger place the next time he came out. He was a very witty person and I loved some of his response to things. I had no idea that he was even sick and I am truly sorry to hear of his passing. I will pray for his family and wish them well. Like you said, he will be truly missed. He was one of my phone, e-mail, and iModler friends that I had never met personally but felt a real connection with.

    So very sad.


  16. Bernie will definitely be missed here on iModeler and, I’m sure, elsewhere. He always had a good word to say and was a mine of useful information. Thank you, Jeff, for passing on this sad news.

  17. Drat! (Stronger word initially used) One of the first good friends I made here. Definitely a light heart and a good touch. He’ll definitely be missed here.

  18. This is something that we never like to hear………….. but thank you Jeff for letting us know. This comes as a shock to me, as Bernie had just left a comment on my He-111 build about 6 days ago. Like others have stated above, he always had something positive to say, and did so in a humorous manner. Bernie was very knowledgeable in a lot of subjects too.

    He will be missed. My thoughts and prayers go out to his family.

    Blue skies my friend………………

  19. That news is like taking a sledge hammer to the heart. Had several conversations with Bernie and always enjoyed his comments here on iModeler. A true gentleman with a great sense of humor and a seemingly endless source of information. Jeff I don’t believe I told you I invited him to fly up to Cincinnati and we’d drive together to the Indianapolis show as a surprise. He was very grateful for the invite, but related he had some health issues and reluctantly had to decline. God I wish we could have pulled that off. Rest in peace Bernie, you will be missed.

  20. I’m in stunned disbelief. Bernie was a gem of a friend, very helpful, very wise, very friendly, very funny. This is a great loss indeed.

    Prayers for the family. If we miss him, how much more those who knew him in the flesh.

  21. Incredibly sad news to hear Jeff. One of the first great guys here to welcome me when I first joined back 2013, in fact almost 5 years ago to the day, May 13th, wow that long. This is a great community here and losing one of our brothers is quite a jolt. Bernard my friend so long and may you continue to bless those in heaven as you blessed us here on Earth. It was an honor to build with you.

  22. Sad news. R.I.P. Bernie.
    I met Bernie on iModeler and we became friends. As you know, Bernie lived in Baltimore. I helped build a Baltimore Pilot Boat back in 84. After I told him that, we exchanged messages and memories about our lives.
    My sincere condolences to Bernie’s family.

  23. Sad news, rest in peace, Bernard.

  24. Rest in peace, Bernard. 🙁

  25. Yes, I remember him well. It’s clear from the wealth of heart-felt and sympathetic comments that he was a good friend to many and will be missed.

  26. Sad news indeed, he will be missed by all.
    Bernie was always a kind and genuine guy.
    His comments were always positive .
    R.I.P. Bernie.

  27. Bernie was a constant source of kindness – which is the best thing you can be in this world.

  28. May God comfort his soul.

  29. I’m so sad to hear this news. I didn’t have the close friendship with him that some of you did, but he did make some very kind comments on my builds and was a great representative for me of the iModeler approach to things. I’m sorry to hear of his passing, but your description of him and his words and acts brought a smile to my heart. Blue Skies, Bernie…

  30. Very sad news indeed, Bernie will be missed, thank you Jeff for letting us know.

  31. Sad news indeed. All my best regards.

  32. Bernie was the first to befriend me on this site
    RIP Bernie


  33. On behalf of the Hackett family, I thank you all for the kind comments and well wishes.

  34. I was sorry to learn of Bernie’s death, I didn’t know him as well as I would have liked, but we had chatted on a number of topics.
    He was on my mind recently as I was thinking of a project and knowing he was a helper at the Martin museum, I was planning to chat to him on one or two ideas I had.
    It’s a matter of regret now that I didn’t do so when I had the opportunity…a lesson there perhaps.
    I always found Bernie to be a friendly and intelligent guy with a keen sense of humour and will miss his funny and generous contributions. Its nice to see him remembered so fondly here – a measure of the man I think.
    God go with you Bernie.
    Jeff, thanks for letting us know, an unenviable task being the bearer of such bad news but one you carried out with great kindness – thank you.
    Sympathies to Bernie’s family.
    Best wishes to you all.

  35. Really sad news Jeff. Deepest condolences.

  36. Well I’m late to this topic but Bernie’s passing is truly sad and a surprise to me. We corresponded a number of times and he was always a class guy and a first class hot ticket, full of wit and knowledge. He never mentioned any illness but always made me chuckle with some of his views on model topics. Like all the other folks here I offer my condolences and will remember him as a nice guy and decent individual. Fair winds and following seas Mr. Hackett….

  37. Siento mucho lo de Bernie,tanto como no haberlo conocido.

  38. Richard ( @richardmcstay48gmail-com ), Mike ( @john_galt ), and Julio ( @redbaron ) I just went back to my post and found your replies. I know it’s been 6 months to a year later than you posted these comments, but I wanted to thank you all for the great & kind comments about Bernie.

    Gracias, amigos!

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