(c) 2016 Jon L Gelman, All Rights Reserved.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

David DePaolo A devote fan of life

Lunch with (R) David DePaola
Malibu Seafood, May 2016
Many years ago I met a wonderful and passionate fellow on the Internet, David DePaolo. He just popped up in an e-mail one morning and he wrote that we should meet in Florida of all places. Neither of us was ever in the same place at the same time for a couple of years and we finally caught up at his favorite California eatery, Malibu Seafood. A 5-star seafood shack overlooking  the stunning Malibu beach. The common denominator of writing and workers’ compensation made us instant friends. 

Six weeks ago, I called up David and said: "its time to have lunch and just catch up." We met of course, at Malibu Seafood. He had been eating there regularly since his law school days at Pepperdine. The place is literally just down the road from the law school, and he said the menu hasn’t changed since.

David was a delightful fellow with all the best attributes: smart, witty, insightful, a wonderful spouse and parent, cutting edge, and courageous. He arrived wearing his beautiful multi-color shoes created by a disabled worker whose business he was promoting. We just talked and talked for hours about “life in general.” Neither of us realizing how much time was just flying by. We discussed some ideas on how to give more back to the workers’ compensation system and hopefully inspire a new generation of lawyers. Before we left we promised to meet again on the East coast in September and just chat some more.

He was my inspiration for my continued bicycling in all types of weather and terrain. Although I never came close to his “operational” abilities. He was an inspiration.

David was able to launch a much needed national workers’ compensation news service, i.e. the stellar, WorkCompCentral. His daily insightful blogs constantly sparked my interest, and those of national thought leaders.

David’s heart was in the right place. He advocated for needed change in the workers’ compensation arena. He passionately pursued charitable causes and advanced educational goals, to make the world a better place.

The universe will be a sadder place without David, but I hope that his spirit and inspiration will live on in all of us to continue his passion for making the world a better place.