Tribute to Paul "Onceuponatime" Martello

in #bitshares4 years ago (edited)

To be, or not to be--that is the question:
Whether 'tis nobler in the mind to suffer
The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune
Or to take arms against a sea of troubles
And by opposing end them.

Paul with Michael, Angus and Stan at Mission Space headquarters

Alas, my dear friend Paul Martello is currently wrestling with Hamlet's dilemma. I'm writing this now so he can hopefully read my thoughts on his life. A couple months ago he had a massive stroke which left him lying in his home in Greece for many hours before he was discovered and rushed to the hospital. As a result, he has been paralyzed on his right side and unable to speak since then. He was recently transferred to a hospice in Switzerland where strong laws permit him to refuse medical service and food allowing him to control his own fate and pass on with dignity in the presence and care of a loving family.

To die, to sleep--No more
--and by a sleep to say we end
The heartache, and the thousand natural shocks
That flesh is heir to. 'Tis a consummation
Devoutly to be wished.

Stan, Daniel, Paul and Michael at the Corinth Canal

A lot of us have tried to talk to him. He is a very strong-willed person unwilling to spend the next twenty or thirty years trapped in a malfunctioning body unable to have the quality of life to which he is accustomed. He is courageous, strong, tough, strong willed, stubborn, determined and never never wants anyone else to control him. That is the worst thing that anyone could ever try to do to Paul. Especially when, as a devout Christian he knows that "although we know that while we are at home in the body, we are away from the Lord. For we walk by faith, not by sight. We are confident, then, and would prefer to be away from the body and at home with the Lord." -- 2 Cor 5:6. He has a new version 2.0 body waiting for him just across the spiritual Jordan river.

To die, to sleep--
To sleep--perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub,
For in that sleep of death what dreams may come
When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,
Must give us pause.

Paul is not worried at all about what dreams may come in that sleep of death. He knows, as St. Paul wrote in 2 Corinthians 5:1 "Now we know that if the earthly tent we live in is dismantled, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands. For in this tent we groan, longing to be clothed with our heavenly dwelling, because when we are clothed, we will not be found naked. So while we are in this tent, we groan under our burdens, because we do not wish to be unclothed but clothed, so that our mortality may be swallowed up by life."

There's the respect
That makes calamity of so long life.
For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,
Th' oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely
The pangs of despised love, the law's delay,
The insolence of office, and the spurns
That patient merit of th' unworthy takes,
When he himself might his quietus make
With a bare bodkin?

So, Paul has chosen this metaphorical bodkin (dagger), refusing to eat and intends to exit on his own terms. He has no need to bear the fardels (burdens) of this life any longer.

Who would fardels bear,
To grunt and sweat under a weary life,
But that the dread of something after death,
The undiscovered country, from whose bourn
No traveller returns, puzzles the will,
And makes us rather bear those ills we have
Than fly to others that we know not of?
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all...

Paul has no such fears. Paul has had so many life experiences in many different cultures and in many different countries. He has lived in caves in Afghanistan, in the Himalayan mountains in a high altitude remote village. He has lived in a luxury high rise in the city, on the streets, under bridges, in ditches, with native Indians in Arizona, in prison, in arctic mining camps, on the concrete floor of a dark and bare basement, in a van, in a cabin in the woods and in a trailer. He has worked as a labourer, as an entrepreneur, as an accountant, as an undercover tax fraud agent for the Government of Canada and then right back to being a pizza delivery man.

He has lived in poverty and with riches. His views about life and death have been shaped by what he has seen and experienced. Things more diverse than almost anyone will ever experience in their lifetime. He is supremely intelligent, in fact he was moved ahead by two grades in school and yet contrastingly he is highly impractical and idealistic. He has read more books and studied more subjects than any one that I know or have heard about.

Paul is my partner in Terradacs, where we together funded the development of BEOS and is a board member on the BLCA Limited Cooperative Association that was created to operate BEOS. I will miss him terribly if he leaves us. So will his many friends some of who are shown in the photos here. I hope that many of you will post your love and remarks to Paul in the comments below while he is still with us and able to appreciate them.

“The things that began to happen after that were so great and beautiful that I cannot write them. And for us this is the end of all the stories, and we can most truly say that they all lived happily ever after. But for them this was only the beginning of the real story. All their life in this world and all their adventures in Narnia had only been the cover and the title page: now at last they were beginning Chapter One of the Great Story, which no one on earth has read: which goes on for ever: in which every chapter is better than the one before." -- CS Lewis, The Chronicles of Narnia

See you later Onceuponatime - "There at the Beginning of the Stories You Love"

Paul stands in the place of St. Paul before the bema (judgement seat)
of Proconsul Galleo (occupied by me) in Corinth per Acts 18:12

Paul's many friends gather in a restaurant at the base of the Acropolis in Athens


Dear friends and business associates of Paul "Onceuponatime" Martello,

Unfortunately I need to give you the news that our dear brother Paul passed away this morning at 10:25. He was strong, brave and resolved to the end. Larry, Manuela and I were with him holding his hand as he took his last breath.

As you know he was offered every possibility for recovery both here and in Greece and he chose this path. I am happy that he is now at peace and I am confident of seeing him again under better circumstances. I know that he was confident of that too.

In faith and hope,

Ted Martello and family


Beautifully written @stan.

Paul @onceuponatime, with all these life experiences you have had and all the gifts God has blessed you with, there is so much more you have to offer. I would love to read about all these wonderful life experiences you have had. Your life journey can be used to inspire, encourage and comfort so many people out there, and sometimes our physical limitations, sufferings and pain becomes part of our story that God can use to bless others. I know God has certainly used my physical limitations, sufferings and pain to enrich my life and encourage others.

Joni Eareckson Tada became an inspiration and encouragement to so many people after an accident that left her quadriplegic, and Helen Keller ministered to people through her deaf blindness.

You are blessed to have friends that care for you so deeply.I hope you stay strong and consider embracing the next adventure God has for you on earth before He calls you home in His time.

Nice Bernie other nextgen!

I’m not Bernie. Bernie = nextgencrypto, a different nextgen. :)

I'm mistaken. Edited :D

Hehe no worries. You’re not the first. I get mistaken for NGC all the time. :)

My dear friend, you are an outstanding person in every shape and form. I’ve had so many great conversations with you and I really really miss that.
We all have such amazing memories of our time with you in Loutraki because you made it happen, so I want to thank you yet again (I love seeing our pictures in Stan’s post, thanks Stan)
As I said to you the other day, I have never met someone with such a powerful mind and I wish you would use it to re-route that powerful brain of yours, as well I said I will respect your wishes but I did think of another item to discuss :)
I said I would get you a pretty caretaker if you rehabbed and came back to Terrace but what about FOMO :). Yes my friend the fear of missing out:). What would she look like? And let’s not miss this opportunity to mention the FOMO with BEOS :)

Thanks for getting me involved with crypto and educating me on worldly topics. Just when I thought I knew it all, you always gave me new perspectives.

Both Lloyd and I would love to spend more time with you on Earth so I’m sending you lots of love and big hugs from Canada to Switzerland and a kick in the butt to get talking to say you want HBOT.

Btw @creatr Paul knows the benefits of HBOT and I’ve offered the family to pay for it.

You tell him Samiam! Paul, don't make me come over there and smack some sense into you. This is nothing but your greatest challenge yet. Don't give up on it! Take samiam up on her wonderful offer!

Indeed! HBOT... HyperBaric Oxygen Therapy! Good stuff, lots of history, some incredible results... We're all praying for you, Paul! <3

Hydrogen therapy too... If they have it, you should take it! We need you here. ;)


Dear Paul,

How are you today?! I do hope you are feeling much more cheerful today. I forgot to tell you about my friend; two years ago her husband had a stoke and he list the control of one side of his body. My friend was very sad and thought it was the end. But now her husband could walk with a walking stick! I was quite amazed when my friend told me about his slow progress each month.

It took him six months of daily physical therapy to get him back to his feet! You know the wonder of Thai massage!! I think the Japanese also has pressure points’ massage. So, it’s a possibility to rehabilitate the muscles and body.

You should try your best and make the best effort before resigning from the stage! Let’s the Referee make that decision for you!

You are always a real fighter! Show yourself that you are still one of the most stubborn fighters on earth!

Thinking of you everyday!
Even if you had to travel in wheel chair, you still look very handsome and mysterious!

Please get stronger everyday!
Sending you a big hug.

Good grief, Stan! :O

I am so distressed to hear of this. What is it with you BEOS founders? You and Paul, both confronting death up close and personal... ;(

Paul, (@onceuponatime), if you're reading this; Do you know about, are you aware of hydrogen therapy for strokes? And do you know about hyperbaric oxygen treatments for strokes?

Brother, I believe that both of these treatments could possibly help you to recover... Curiously enough, I have just finished building a hydrogen/oxygen generating machine for my wife...

"Fountain of Youth"

...and my wife and I have begun breathing the gas as a means of improving our general health. You can purchase these machines ready-made as well; if you need to know where, please just ask me.

Please, Paul, don't forget what another Paul once said:

"For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know! I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ, which is better by far; but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body. Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith, so that through my being with you again your boasting in Christ Jesus will abound on account of me."

Friend Paul, if you can, please read the material at the links in this message... May our good LORD Jesus bless you and bring you back to health! You will be in my prayers.



@stan, please convey him my personal experience of miracle. One of my very close relative had a brain stroke in 1st week of October, and was put in the ICU for near a month. Here is a photo I took in the ICU ( for the first time posting it here) in first few days where there was some hope.


But after couple of weeks, he was lying there with full body paralysis after which the doctor advised to take him home. They said, there is very little hope of he recovering (as if he were brain dead) and we took him home.

After 4 months of nursing and care at home, today he has recovered to raise his hands, recognize people, murmuring , express some feelings. There are certain things beyond medical science, and I think, Paul can definitely make a come back.

And there are even alternative medicines, which are effective and worthwhile to explore. I will be happy to personally show videos of my relative, if Paul wants to see how life can see miracles.

Please consider sending a message that music can help recover the speech, maybe songs he like to sing can help increase the recovery!

this is so sad. @onceuptonatime if you read this please consider to not do any FINAL decisions, medicine changes daily and loads of things it still doesnt understand.

I interacted, briefly, with Paul & remember well his playful spirit and love of language.

Thank you, for your trust in sharing this tribute. If I might be allowed to bring in the spiritual dimension —- we are not permitted to be done with life, until life is done with us.

Each stage, if we properly know how to use it, offers mysterious blessings.

I pray Paul will consider this & not give up on the Beauty-to-come 🙇🏻‍♂️



This is dreadful to read. I wish I'd had a chance to get to know Paul @onceuponatime. I was just commenting about this with another steemian who lives in Romania. Here is what I shared.

I am 'off and on' caregiver for my niece's husband who is a quadriplegic; paralyzed from the neck down.
He DOES have some use of his arms, his hands are basically claws, but he drives his electric wheelchair and operates his computer using a pencil/stylus wrapped around his hand.
Personally, I do not want to live that life (colostomy, supra-pubic catheter, feeding tube into his stomach) but my niece (his wife) is his full time caregiver, he gets $10,000 USD PER MONTH as long as he is alive, so given their circumstances, they live pretty well.
He can speak, but he cannot eat real food, hence the feeding tube. He has a device that she loads with liquid nourishment and water a couple of times a day.He had had intestinal difficulties prior to the accident that damaged his spine.
So as a "Certified Nursing Assistant" I can see both sides of that equation.

A few months is not long enough to wait for hope and therapy to take effect @onceuponatime, if you are reading this.

Please do not give up yet.

Dear Paul - @onceuponatime .
When I heard from my dear friend @liondani about your health issue I was really saddened. To tell you the truth I understand that this may be difficult for you and how you may be feeling right now, due to my 38 life experience in a wheelchair. If there is something I can tell you, is that life must be taken as it comes and you have to find means and ways to fight and enjoy it. Patience and prays are the mark of the wise and strong men , for this is why God make us swim in deep Waters sometimes in our life. You have to believe that this point is your turning point in your life and at this point you either lose yourself or become stronger and overcome this obstacle in front of you. The first steps are always the hardest and the most painful to take but I want you take them you will remember that moment for rest of your life, because it will mean that you have become stronger and braver. God always help those who are in need and have a good soul , so I am sure that he will help you because your soul my friend is a diamond. I will never forget you helped me the moments I needed your help. And now with this message I am the one who wants to help you by sending to you My Brightest energy and my prayers. I will wait for you in Loutraki so that we can meet again.

From Anna with love.

Really sorry to hear this, although we never really interacted much on chain with each other he was a big part of Steem from the very beginnings and I often saw him interacting and curating all over the place. May your votes that have generated users Steem Power do a lot of good in the future through further distribution and people being able to track where they originated from.

Like many others stated in the comments, please consider the near future and the evolving technology and give it more thought.

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