The Passing of a Friend

Opening this morning’s newspaper I was jarred to see the obituary of a friend.  Pete Archey was a very dedicated and active advocate for senior citizens and his career centered on health care.  It’s a shock to see him gone so soon, only 70 years old.

I met Pete at a Medicare Part D rally in Topton, sent there on a request from the Lois Murphy campaign to record Congressman Jim Gerlach.  Instead of taping the Congressman (I already got some damaging video for them, which they then lost) I watched Pete give a great comprehensive, and critical, presentation.

We saw each other at many Berks County area events, especially County Commissioner meetings.  He was a tireless advocate for the elderly and was constantly their watchdog.  Sometimes he’d slip me a note and he was always assisting me in my efforts with Healthcare 4 All PA.  I would get his notes and emails with various questions about the legislation and I appeared on one of his BCTV panels on health care.

Pete had long and extensive experience in health care issues.  At one time he was Executive Director of the PA Association of Area Agencies on Aging, project director at the State Department of Health, director of the Health Care Cost Containment Council and Executive Director of the Health Systems Council of Eastern Pennsylvania.  This experience was especially valuable for those of us advocating for real, genuine health care reform.

Pete was always willing to share his knowledge and expertise for the common good.  He had no personal agenda, something quite rare these days.  I’m going to miss Pete.  Farewell my friend and I hope your family buries you with your hat.

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