Letters: Wednesday, September 03, 2008

To the editor: I know that I will not be able to articulate this correctly, but that piece on Ace Cook (“Ace Folds a Hand,” Aug. 20, 2008) was one of the best pieces of journalism I have ever read. Even if I had never heard of A.C. Cook, I would have caught the flavor of him through your writing. But I do know him, and you captured the true essence of Ace. What a joy that was to read!
Two weeks ago he was in the gallery when a black woman came in, and the two struck up a conversation. Within five minutes he was all wound up and almost screaming at her about what a raw deal minorities have gotten. I finally had to rescue her.
I had to write and tell you what a great job Jeff did. From the very first sentence I was pulled in and could not stop until I finished reading every word. Then I went back and re-read my favorite parts. I love it when that happens. Thank you so much for writing it.
Joel Lively
Fort Worth

To the editor: I am A. C. Cook’s daughter, and I just wanted to let you guys know not to count him out yet. Everything is going well with his treatment, and we are learning that he is living with cancer, not dying of it. He just got a great report from M.D. Anderson Cancer Center, and everything is progressing in a positive manner. While we know that his health is critical, we also know that there are some fantastic options, and he is fighting hard. His cancer is very rare and one that we have to keep “stable.” As of right now, he is stable, and with the grace of God, he will be stable for many more doctor appointments to come. Our lives have become a three-week cycle of chemo and doctor appointments, but it has been well worth it — his health is improving, and as of right now he is able to stay ahead of the cancer. I will keep everyone updated. Thank y’all for a great article.
Charlene Cook Lindstrom
Fort Worth

To the editor: I really enjoyed the article on Ace. It set just the right tone and projects the outward essence of this unique Fort Worth person. Ace and I have had contact a few times a year, but I can’t really say that I know him well. And yet each time I stop in to see him, we immediately are on to history, art, maps, and Western literature. He has always been very supportive of my work with Texas and Western maps, and I always come away feeling like I know a lot more than I did when I went in. Ace can talk, but he also listens.
I realize your space was limited and you couldn’t cover everything, but I have a couple of suggestions. First, I think Ace is best described as a populist, if we have to get to political terms. He is definitely of the people right now, in the old sense of that term.
The other issue is that superb Exchange Avenue building he has resurrected so carefully. It has a great feel to it while still being a useful and decorative place. I hate to think what will become of that building. It needs to be acquired by someone with a sense of history and used carefully and with respect. In my opinion, that building is as much a work of art as anything Ace owns.
Thanks again for an excellent and perceptive article.
Pete Charlton
Fort Worth

To the editor: I found your story on A.C. “Ace” Cook very interesting and informative. While criticized for buying from the uninformed dealer, Ace deserves every penny he can get for his art collection. He had to study, research, pick his friends’ brains, and have a great gut instinct to purchase these paintings. All of us in the antique/art/junk world hope we have the knowledge to recognize a good (great) deal and make money. I found from my dealings with Ace that he is intimidating, a shrewd businessman, generous, and kind. Here’s hoping the art stays in Fort Worth.
Valerie Arnett
Fort Worth

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