Dan Scharfman, please get well soon!

Dan Scharfman

Dan Scharfman, a much-loved colleague and friend, suffered a very serious heart attack earlier this week, and is currently in a medically induced coma at Mount Auburn Hospital. My thoughts and prayers go out for him, and his loved ones, and his community.

Dan is a revered figure in the local world of mission-based organizations and nonprofit technology assistance providers – a consultant’s consultant.  He serves as vice president of information solutions at Baird Associates, and as a member of the board of the Belmont School Committee.  He is an inveterate punster, a classisist, a devoted family man, an avid long distance runner, and a brilliant practitioner in the field of nonprofit technology.  It’s extremely unusual to find a colleague who is as at home under a client’s desk, trouble-shooting a PC that has crashed, as he is addressing a the distraught, technophobic board of a nonprofit that is facing a major information systems implementation. But Dan does that, and more.

Yesterday, I spoke at length to his close colleague and friend, Doug Baird of Baird Associates, about Dan’s condition.  There isn’t much news to report; not much is known about Dan’s prognosis yet.  However, there is much material for reflection; Doug and I found ourselves musing on the inherent injustice of a universe in which Dan, who is not only a exemplary human being, but also a fitness fanatic who trains for 100 mile races for fun, should be stricken with a heart attack.

Well, this isn’t a fair universe.  We don’t know why someone like Dan has to suffer a heart attack, and we may never know.  On both a medical level and a metaphysical level, it doesn’t make any sense.

However, I believe in the power of human prayer and human good wishes for someone who is suffering.  It’s another phenomenon that we don’t understand, and may never understand.  It certainly isn’t like ordering a pizza that is guaranteed to arrive exactly on time and with just the right toppings.  But prayers and good wishes do work for the better, and I invite you to join me in tapping into the power of love and healing on Dan’s behalf.


7 thoughts on “Dan Scharfman, please get well soon!

  1. Claire Reinelt (@creinelt) 01/19/2013 at 2:58 pm Reply

    So sorry to hear about Dan…have fond memories of him helping the consulting firm I worked with through the early years of new technology (mid-nineties). Everything you say is so true…thanks Deborah for sharing these thoughts. Sending gratitude to Dan, and prayers for his recovery

  2. hillel korin 01/19/2013 at 3:18 pm Reply

    speedy recovery Dan

  3. Cherry 01/19/2013 at 3:54 pm Reply

    Deborah, thanks for sending this. I knew about Dan’s heart attack, wasn’t aware he’s in a medically induced coma. That can’t be good. Hopes and prayers for Dan’s complete and rapid recovery.

  4. Doug Baird 01/19/2013 at 4:52 pm Reply


    And all who read this feed – –

    I have known Dan for a generation. His mom and mine shared community efforts in Lexington 50 years ago. Dan’s older brother and my younger bro were close friends through college.

    His brutal health crisis is not simply that of a revered co-worker. It is among the most searing in my life.

    I wish I could tell you that the crisis is over. Not yet. He was struck terribly and the prognosis will be cautious for some time. At the same time, he is at Mt. Auburn Hospital and receiving the very best of treatment.

    We all await his near term struggle and his recovery.

    Dan is a massively high energy runner who pays attention to what is the healthiest course. I expect that will provide him critical energy and resources as he confronts this terrible personal assault.

    Keep Dan in your most central thinking these next few weeks. He will need all the energy you can send.

    With deep care & concern.

    Doug Baird

  5. Eric Segal 01/19/2013 at 10:24 pm Reply

    I did not know — that is tragic. Dan, I’m with you.

  6. Mark Dyer 01/21/2013 at 3:07 pm Reply

    Dan was a good friend, an esteemed colleague, and was instrumental almost ten years ago in landing me in the position I currently have at Minuteman Senior Services. We shared the same birthday (New Year’s Eve) and I had hoped he would be able to join me at a celebration of my 60th this past Saturday evening. Unfortunately, as you may have heard by now, Dan passed this morning. My best wishes go now to his family and the others that will miss him terribly for some time to come.

  7. Deborah Elizabeth Finn 01/21/2013 at 3:11 pm Reply

    I am very sorry to announce that Dan died last night. May his memory always be a blessing to us. May his family and other loved ones be comforted among the mourners of Zion, Jerusalem, and all the world.

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