Sister Rebecca speaks!

The good news is that Tom Moldvay’s gaming materials and manuscripts etc. were not destroyed in a bonfire.

The bad news is that they were trashed by a jackhole landlord.

Rebecca Moldvay Weiner, his sister, stumbled upon my blog and set the record straight.

Thanks for all of your memories of my brother Tom but fear that your source has been pulling your leg. I am not sure if I should be upset at being called a religious fanatic or be amused as my brother would have been at the absurd story. Sadly Tom passed while living alone and was not discovered for some time. I was notified by the coroner only after he had been cremated. After contacting his landlord I was given 2 days to go through his belongings which were stuffed into garbage bags. I tried to rescue what I could but it was a small portion of a long and creative lifetime of work. I love and miss you Tom. Sister Rebecca (yes like the character he named for me) This made me cry.

I apologized to her privately for repeating an unconfirmed rumor and I hope she will forgive any hurt that story caused.

In hindsight I can imagine a chain of events where the bare facts (Tom’s stuff mostly destroyed after his death; his sister was there) might have morphed into an urban legend that better fit the typos of the Satanic Panic (Tom’s stuff was burned in a bonfire, just like in Dark Dungeons!  His fanatic sister did it!), and I am sorry I repeated the story.

Published in: on January 6, 2012 at 11:37 am  Comments (7)  
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7 CommentsLeave a comment

  1. That’s a sad story.

    I didn’t pay a lot of attention as a kid when playing through all the D&D material to bylines, but these days I do. One thing that many of my favorite adventures had in common was one thing: Tom Moldvay’s name on it. He was a talented and creative man.

  2. I agree – thanks for sharing this Mike. If Sister Rebecca makes it back to your blog at some point, Tom is well-remembered for his creativity and having a positive influence on so many young folks. The games he edited and the modules he wrote are still my favorites.

  3. Damn it, that is such a depressing story. Dying alone and your landlord throws your life away into a trash bag. So brutal.

    Moldvay’s Basic D&D is always with me as I work on my hex crawl. I love that version of D&D like no other.

  4. Damn.

  5. It’s good that she was able to see what sort of negative rumors were floating around about her and take steps to remedy the situation. More power to you, Sister Rebecca.

    The heart-wrenching story of Tom’s passing brings to mind the whole reason I started my blog: when I go, I want the creative crap my imagination’s vomited forth to be swirling around the internet for folks to ignore or enjoy at their leisure, not packed away in storage or tossed in the trash. I’m not looking to reach the status Tom did, with people like me posthumously and profusely thanking him for the things he created; I’m not worried about my name living on. I just don’t want all of these bits of my imagination to be lost forever when I’m gone.

  6. The Basic booklet… Lords of Creation… Castle Amber… Isle of Dread… The Lost City…

  7. Thank you Sister Rebecca and thank you Mike. This is a sad story, but the good news is that Tom created quite a legacy. He is a gaming legend and I for one have been profoundly and positively impacted by his work. Thank you Tom for everything.

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