Stealth Love Notes
Barbara Spence was thumbing through a cookbook several weeks ago, when she noticed a note stuck between the pages among the cookie recipes. It read, "I love you, M."
The M was Maynard S. Spence Jr., 42, her husband, a man with a deep devotion and a flair for the romantic. A few years earlier, Mr. Spence had exhausted an entire pad of sticky notes to his wife and hidden them around the house; even today, Mrs. Spence is finding them.
His love notes may have been stealth, but his presence was not. His laugh was big and deep, and colleagues at the Marsh & McLennan office in Atlanta — a construction safety consultant, he was at the World Trade Center on Sept. 11 for a meeting — always knew when the gregarious, seemingly perpetually happy Mr. Spence was in the vicinity.
"It was the most honest laugh you could imagine," his manager, Gary L. Pohlmann, said of Mr. Spence, whom family and friends also remember for his love of barbecue and pickup basketball. The laugh, Mr. Pohlmann said, was one that "everybody in our office continues to wait to hear."
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on December 13, 2001.