Hank Moorehouse has Died Suddenly

Discuss the latest news and rumors in the magic world.

Postby Lupe Nielsen » 07/02/11 04:37 PM

OMG! We just heard Hank passed away while in China. Please tell me it is not true!

Regards, Lupe
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Postby Dustin Stinett » 07/02/11 05:22 PM

I just heard this too, and I'm afraid it's true. Certainly a sad day for magic. My condolences to his family and many, many friends.
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Postby Richard Kaufman » 07/02/11 07:38 PM

Damn, I just saw Hank in May at the Magic Collector's Association. A nice man.

Official information from Brad Jacobs:

Dear Friends,

It is with a very heavy heart that I write with the news that Hank died suddenly in Beijing while on a two week tour of close-up magic for Mr. Lin. Currently, there is little communication since the US Embassy is closed for the July 4 holiday. The death certificate must go through the Embassy which won't open until Tuesday - and only after that can the body be released.

I have spoken with Jackie and she has family close by. Hank took his address book with him so she has no way of contacting you. She has agreed that we will continue with the tribute to Hank at the SAM convention in Pittsburgh. However, a number of changes are being made to the script so that it is a celebration of Hank's life. Jackie will not be at the convention because there will be many things to do after Hank's body returns.

Brad Jacobs
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Postby David Williamson » 07/02/11 09:13 PM

I want to send my condolences to Hank's family and many friends. I am on tour here in Beijing with Hank. He has arranged tours for magician's here in China since FISM in 2009, in cooperation with Mr. Lin. Our current close-up magic tour is 25 shows in 16 cities over 5 weeks.

Hank was to be with us for 2 weeks before traveling to the Pittsburgh SAM convention where he is to be honored.

After last night's show in the beautiful Poly Theater, Hank was giving the artists their show notes when he collapsed and passed away. He did not suffer.

We are all stunned and saddened here. All through the ensuing hours, Mr. Lin received text after text from people saying how much they enjoyed the show. We all agreed that it was a fitting tribute to Hank, who had brought us all together and produced the show.

He went the way I want to go, doing what he loved.

I'll miss him.
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Postby Jon Racherbaumer » 07/02/11 11:42 PM

Hank was a ubiquitous presence and a energetic catalyst for more years than I can recollect. We shared the same birthplace (Oak Park, Illinois) and he started out at the Mazda Mystic Ring, as well. But he evolved into one of the great movers-and-shakers. He did almost everything. His absence from our magic world will be felt by many and our ever-changing magical ecosystem will feel the loss. Like fellow Abbott-ites, Hank also left us while in the saddle, in the center of another glorious magic event, and in the gleeful throes of it. Yes, all who knew him are now stunned and saddened, but I deeply agree with David Williamson. I will miss him.
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Postby Rich Cowley » 07/03/11 02:02 AM

I'm so sorry to hear this news!

Hank was one of those rare people who could teach a blockbuster lesson with a single sentence. I speak from experience; I remember Hank giving a lecture back in the late 70's, when I was a teenager:

- He held up three ropes and said, "Here's what I do at kid's shows", and started a Professor's Nightmare-y routine. I almost stopped paying attention and, believe me, that would have been a mistake...

- When it was over, he put the ropes into the exact same opening position and said, "Here's what I do at corporate hospitality parties" - and did the exact same routine, but with very different (and very appropriate) lines to go with it.

- After that, he set up again, and said, "Here's what I do at trade shows". Again: exact same hands, very different words.

- "Here's what I do when I work bars..." You get the idea.

Man, did that idea stick in my head! Set yourself up so your hands only have to learn one thing, and leverage it all over the place: genius!

I'll always be indebted to Hank; I'll never forget him, if only for that one simple lesson. (And, I'll never stop telling that story to younger magicians, in hopes that they never forget, either!)
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Postby Diego » 07/03/11 03:52 AM

Very sad news. I also talked with him at Collectors last May in Chicago.

Hank was always very supportive of my projects and volunteered his help to me.
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Postby Matthew Field » 07/03/11 07:42 AM

Hank was always a smiling presence at Blackpool and,with his wife, Jackie, a big supporter of magic. I got to know him while he was still a member of The Magic Circle.

I'm glad to say that he was honored with his picture on the cover of the June M-U-M, and a profile inside.

Condolences to his family.

Matt Field
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Postby Chuck Romano » 07/03/11 09:50 AM

I have known Hank since I was a kid and he was a big inspiration and friend to me. I recently saw him and he gave me a packet of letters. He kept every letter I ever wrote to him. Hank thought my son would get a kick out of seeing letters his father wrote in sixth grade.

I just wrote about Hank on my blog and it is hard to believe he is gone. I will miss him. RIP, Hank.
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Postby Mark Weidhaas » 07/06/11 01:37 PM

The S.A.M. has placed the JUNE M-U-M article about Hank on the public side of our website for all. Go to www.magicsam.com

Eulogy and tribute to be given in Pittsburgh at the Wednesday, July 13 kick-off programm at noon. Video will be repeated Saturday morning at the awrards program.

Mark Weidhaas
SAM National President, 2010-11
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