Homage to My Beautiful Friend Ricardo Accorsi

I wrote this homage to my dear friend Ricardo Accorsi in the spring of 2014.


In a nutshell

Ricardo Accorsi was a brilliant architect, prolific artist, and badass musician. In 2010, after the Great Recession smacked down every construction-related profession, Ricardo closed his Los Angeles architecture studio.

Undaunted and in fact energized, he and his lovely lady Linda Parker bought their dream boat, named her Bailando, and left to sail the world.

All was well with for a few chill, exploratory years that were also incredibly productive for the duo artistically and musically. But then, in the fall of 2013, alarming physical symptoms blindsided Ricardo and prompted months of testing. He was diagnosed with ALS in the spring of 2014.


Ricardo Accorsi was a brilliant architect,
prolific artist, and badass musician.


In the face of this horrendous news, he and Linda planned and executed an extraordinary gathering and musical experience in July 2014. Ricardo approached it with typical rigor and was personally involved in every detail.

The reality of this tragic development, and his unflagging determination to be himself in the face of it, to connect deeply in the midst of it with so many who loved him, devastated and inspired us all.

In truth, such audacity in the face of disaster was pure Ricardo. While processing my own shock and grief, I wrote the piece below for him, for Linda, for myself. For everyone who loved him.


Audacity in the face of disaster
was pure Ricardo.


The gathering was ultimately a magnificent bookend to the bon voyage party that had closed his Los Angeles years.

Ricardo Accorsi passed on April 12th, 2015, surrounded by family, friends, and volunteer helpers in a beautiful setting on the island of Kauai. In customary fashion, he designed his passing.

And perhaps most importantly

In fact, it turns out that Ricardo living his dream in those last years, instead of waiting for “someday”, meant everything to him. Let’s all take note.


For You, for Always

for Ricardo Accorsi

My life changed last night,
altered for always
by what you’re sharing now, in these hours,
with so many like me
who want you laughing
and living your sailor’s dream, the one
we’ve all tasted,
like sweet

Now on to the real unknown,
this news you’re bringing,
and how you’re bringing it,
with such sleight of hand, focus,
and grace,
as you proclaim a celebration
of family, friendship,
and music.
Somehow we’ll create a way through
and tomorrow,
for you, for all of us, for
For always.

— Teresa Young

Bon voyage indeed, beautiful friend who years later still comes to me in dreams. May you be sailing crystalline seas, drinking fine red wine, and making merry with other baddasses like you.


Ricardo Accorsi

Black and white featured image of Ricardo Accorsi by John Livzey