Always looking forward regardless of the situation, and not about to let anyone or anything stand in the way of him enjoying his existence.
Fuckin' awesome in that way, really.
I'm pretty sure he touched the lives of everyone he met.
So long, Banjo. Keep it smokey ::
Please read this also. Sante was a legend in the fly fishing community and very people in the pipe community know about his legacy there.
He apparently died during or just after smoking his pipe. Epic.
Sante and I were very close friends. I noticed him declining bit by bit over the past four years, to the point where he was unable to speak to anyone on the telephone. He was a great man who fought several cancers, and other illnesses related to exposure to Agent Orange in Viet Nam. Later, he worked on nuclear sub-marines. He was one the world's best known fly fishermen.
Sante was an exceptionally generous man. He gave more to his fellow pipers than most forum members: pounds and pounds of tobaccos, many pipes (briars and meers), and other related accessories. He turned me on HU blends back in 2012, and in turn, I turned a bunch of people on to them. Sante jokingly said, "You took my job away from me". A few months ago, he surprised me with a 1960s Andreas Bauer Sultan face meer. Sante said it was, "A sultan for the Sultan of Reviewers." He was amazingly supportive of me.
Through out all of Sante's health problems, he remained strong in spirit. For years, despite his own debilitations, Sante continued to create and lead many cancer support groups, always thinking of others who were under going similar journeys. The number of people he helped is unmeasurable. When he was first diagnosed, doctors told him he had at most, two years to live, but Sante soldiered on for 14. He told me a few years back, "The doctors can't believe I'm still alive. I told them I'm staying here because I'm going to 'shock the world' ". He damn near did.
Sante was a well read, brilliant man. He told great, funny, witty stories and loved a good laugh. "My gift is the gift of laughter. I live to make others happy." We constantly traded jokes and stories. Sante would detail his battles with me, knowing that I knew he wasn't looking for sympathy or attention. I never heard him complain or whine about the pain he suffered, or ask "Why me?" or "Woe is me." He told me everything because he knew I cared and wanted to know what was happening with him, and knew I would not express feelings of sorrow for him. That pain, until now, I kept private in my heart.
God bless you, Sante Guiliani. You were one of a kind and the bravest man I have ever known. I don't expect I'll meet another like you again. But I did know you, and for everything there was about you, I shall be forever grateful.
I feel great sadness at this news. Though I didn't know him personally, Santé's presence here and at PSF was always appreciated and I always looked forward to his posts. I always marveled at his beautiful pipes, and couldn't help but feel a little envious of them. The man had exquisite taste. As I lost my oldest brother to Agent Orange, his fight held special meaning to me.
It seems appropriate to quote this passage from The Tempest:
Our revels now are ended. These our actors,