CLEVELAND, OH – A shocked community remembers a man who could go into such an impressively deep meditation that he couldn’t be roused for many minutes, and sometimes for more than an hour. Larry Nister, the man who was consumed in a late night house fire, has been called the best ‘meditator’ in town, and possibly in the entire state.
“You wouldn’t believe his posture and steady breathing,” a fellow member of the neighborhood’s local meditation group said. “When the leader would ring the bell to signal the end of the session, sometimes Larry kept going. Actually, we thought he was doing it just for show, to seem like the best meditator, which makes his death in the fire extra sad because I guess he really wasn’t faking it.”
The firefighter who first broke his way through the house’s scorched remains found Larry Nister’s charred body next to what would have been, before the deadly blaze, his designated meditation chair, with its straight wooden back and hard seat.
Soon the other fire fighters gathered in the house’s office and stood round the man’s blackened body, which lay on its side. “He’d been in a dignified sitting position,” one fire fighter said, “and he was hardened in that upright posture by the heat. It appears the chair collapsed beneath him sometime during the fire. There are no signs he tried to stand up or escape.”
Nister’s family had easily escaped the fire, although it had swallowed much of the kitchen by the time they’d discovered the house was burning. His wife and two teenage daughters gathered in the darkened street. They thought Larry was already out there. By the time they realized he wasn’t, the fire had gained so much intensity the family couldn’t gain reentry.
“We know he’s up there somewhere,” Lily Nister said, “sitting upright in an uncomfortable old chair. Floating on the waves of the universe. Probably doesn’t even know he’s dead yet.”