Apparently, James Rebhorn was something of a writer as well as an actor.
The”Homeland” and “White Collar” actor, who died Friday at age 65 after a long battle with melanoma, took time out before his death to write his own obituary, which was published by Jersey City, N.J.’s St. Paul Lutheran Church on Monday.
Philadelphia native Rebhorn, a busy character actor with roles in many movies and TV shows, started his obituary by paying tribute to his mother Ardelle, who “loved him very much and supported all his dreams,” and father, who taught the actor that “there is no excuse for poor craftsmanship. A job well done rarely takes more or less time than a job poorly done.”
The actor went on to praise his wife Rebecca and his two daughters, who “anchored his life and gave him the freedom to live it. Without them, always at the center of his being, his life would have been little more than a vapor.”
Rebhorn added that he hoped his daughters would “grieve his passing only as long as necessary. They have much good work to do, and they should get busy doing it.”
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The actor wound up his obituary by praising the actors’ unions who represented him, his teachers and his agents.
“He was a lucky man in every way,” the obituary concluded.
Here is the obituary in full:
James Robert Rebhorn, a longtime member of St. Paul’s, died in the Lord, at home with his family, on March 21. At St. Paul’s, he will be remembered not so much for his many screen and stage accomplishments as for his firm faith, his strong leadership, his care for others, and his unfailing good humor. His Life, According to Jim
His Life, According to Jim
James Robert Rebhorn was born on Sept. 1, 1948, in Philadelphia, PA. His mother, Ardell Frances Rebhorn, nee Hoch, loved him very much and supported all his dreams. She taught him the value of good manners and courtesy, and that hospitality is no small thing. His father, James Harry Rebhorn, was no less devoted to him. From him, Jim learned that there is no excuse for poor craftsmanship. A job well done rarely takes more or less time than a job poorly done. They gave him his faith and wisely encouraged him to stay in touch with God.
He is survived by his sister, Janice Barbara Galbraith, of Myrtle Beach, SC. She was his friend, his confidant, and, more often than either of them would like to admit, his bridge over troubled waters.
He is also survived by his wife, Rebecca Fulton Linn, and his two daughters, Emma Rebecca Rebhorn and Hannah Linn Rebhorn. They anchored his life and gave him the freedom to live it. Without them, always at the center of his being, his life would have been little more than a vapor. Rebecca loved him with all his flaws, and in her the concept of ceaseless love could find no better example.
His children made him immensely proud. Their dedication to improving our species and making the world a better place gave him hope for the future. They deal with grief differently, and they should each manage it as they see fit. He hopes, however, that they will grieve his passing only as long as necessary. They have much good work to do, and they should get busy doing it. Time is flying by. His son-in-law, Ben, also survives him. Jim loved Ben, who was as a son to Jim, especially through these last months.
His aunts Jean, Dorothy and Florence, numerous cousins and their families, and many devoted friends also survive Jim. He loved them all, and he knows they loved him.
Jim received his BA at Wittenberg University and his MFA at Columbia. He was a member of Lambda Chi Alpha Nu Zeta 624, a life-long Lutheran, and a longtime member of both the AMC and ACLU.
Jim was fortunate enough to earn his living doing what he loved. He was a professional actor. His unions were always there for him, and he will remain forever grateful for the benefits he gained as a result of the union struggle. Without his exceptional teachers and the representation of the best agents in the business, he wouldn’t have had much of a career. He was a lucky man in every way.
-Jim Rebhorn, March 2014