Ursula: We lost a super hero

Sep 17, 2021, 7:43 AM
Dan Kirk...
Dan Kirk and Rob, a man whose lost wallet and money he found and returned to him.

If you measure one’s greatness by their acts of kindness, then Dan Kirk of Bellevue was a super hero.

From the first day of the Gee and Ursula Show, he would send us positive and supportive emails. A few weeks into the pandemic, we launched our “Letters of Hope” campaign to encourage listeners to send cards and letters to residents of local nursing homes who were living in isolation in their rooms. My father was one of them. When Dan heard me share a story about my dad being disappointed that he didn’t get mail, he started sending handwritten notes to him on a regular basis. My father cherished those letters, always written on notebook paper, always with uplifting and loving messages. After learning my father is German and an avid reader, Dan sent him a baseball cap with a German flag that he’d sewn on it, and a subscription to Time magazine.

Letters from listeners reaching local nursing homes hit by coronavirus

My father and I were not the only beneficiaries of his kindness and honesty. Dan had a knack of finding things that people lost and getting them back to their rightful owner. Last August, Dan was driving on a highway when he saw what looked like a wallet in the middle of the roadway. He pulled over and, sure enough, it was a wallet and there were $100 dollar bills scattered everywhere — 18 of them to be exact. He scooped up all the cash and cards that had fallen out and was able to track down the driver, Rob, who had lost his wallet after leaving it on his car. It was the money Rob was going to use to pay the rent on a home his family was moving into and, without Dan, they would have been in dire straits.

We invited Dan and Rob to share the story on our show.

I had never met Dan in person but was hoping that we could “one of these days.” So on Wednesday night, I was crushed to learn I would never get that chance. This man with a heart of gold died of a heart attack earlier this week. He was only 55.

Since his passing, I also learned that he was a cancer survivor and almost died after a heart attack seven years ago. Dan had his own serious health challenges, but he never talked about them. Instead, he put all his focus and energy into helping and supporting others.

Without exception, everyone who knew him will tell you he was a really good guy, someone who made the world a better place with countless acts of kindness. Heaven has gained a really special angel but we’ve lost one here on earth. Rest easy, Dan. You will never be forgotten.

Listen to the Gee and Ursula Show weekday mornings from 9 a.m. – 12 p.m. on KIRO Radio, 97.3 FM. Subscribe to the podcast here.

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