It was shocking to hear the news today that Eagles front man Glenn Frey had died. He was one of the great voices of all things baby boomers.
2015 was a year of endings for America. With the early 2016 deaths of both David Bowie and Glenn Frey, the “me” generation is now fully transitioning into retirement.
It is odd how transitions work. The 1950s imprinted a generation, but America made a marked turn at Woodstock. The “me” generation took the mantle from the WWII generation and assumed center stage. Baby Boomers have refused to give up that spotlight now for over 40 years.
However, 2016 marks the moment when millennials inherit all things that are current and all things now. Long live queen Adele!
In Myrtle Beach, over the weekend, our baby boomer Mayor had his signature Children’s park desecrated by a vandal with an apparent personal dislike for the Mayor. Perhaps the vandal felt as though he were settling some long and decades old vendetta. Those small spites will soon end entirely, however. Seeing the Mayor respond on the local news, I realized how dated… how tired he looked. His remarks caused me to begin to think back on recent photos and video’ed comments of his contemporaries; Wayne Gray – City Council, Randal Wallace -City Council, Brad Dean – Myrtle Beach Area Chamber of Commerce, Phil Render, Mike Lowder… It suddenly occurred to me how all of these men are showing the wear of a time now passed.
Just before his death, Steve Jobs spoke of the beauty in how succeeding generations replenish and renew. America has historically found hope in the next that is its youth.
As the ongoing migration of baby boomers continue to head south finding new homes at Market Common as a reward in living out their “golden years”, suddenly, I feel the reality of what is a new Myrtle Beach (and a new America). In 2016, this Myrtle Beach will more be defined by most things millennials.
As did Steve Jobs, I share a value that life does belong to the young. I await with some anticipation what this generation will do in shoring up many of the untended items the boomers have left them to resolve. As Glenn once wrote, “I got a peaceful, easy feeling, I know you want let me down… cause I’m already standing on the ground.”
Regardless of how grand, despite how prominent, or how transfixed, history has proven time and again, youth marches on.
RIP Glenn Frey – you ruled your day.