In 83 active and productive years, my father, Dr. David Medved, taught precious life lessons to his friends, professional associates and, most of all, to his four grateful sons. On March 5th, my brother Harry and I traveled from the west coast of the United States to join my brother Jonathan in Jerusalem to celebrate my dad at a festive birthday party with more than a hundred friends and family members. Six days later, in the midst of the raucous and ecstatic Jewish festival of Purim, my dad died suddenly, peacefully and painlessly. Back in Israel for the week of formal mourning, we’ve been focusing on death lessons that shade and supplement everything we learned from my father in his life.
Put Work in Proper Perspective. My father loved his work – as a ground-breaking physicist and high tech entrepreneur – and he continued toiling away at more-than-full-time hours until the last four months of his life, when his advancing lymphoma finally slowed him down. He achieved great things in his career – designing missile guidance systems, teaching physics at some of the world’s finest universities, qualifying as a scientist astronaut for NASA, starting two successful fiber optics companies and writing a challenging, successful book at age 82 (Hidden Light: Science Secrets of the Bible). Nevertheless, the parade of literally hundreds of visitors we’ve received at the house of mourning (my brother’s home in Jerusalem, just blocks away from my dad’s last apartment) seldom mention his business or scientific accomplishments.