For as long as I can remember, the Baby Boom generation (those born beginning in years 1946 through 1964, which includes me) has been the largest generation in American history. I once heard the effect of the huge Baby Boomer generation on life in the U.S. compared to that of a pig going through a python.
But the supremacy of the Baby Boom generation in sheer numbers may be about to change.
Baby Boomer population peaked at 78.8 million in 1999. By 2016, that number had slipped to 74.1 million. The Census Bureau projects that millennial’s (those born from 1981 through 1996) will peak in 2036 at 76.2 million. That seems like a long time from now. BUT . . . if predictions hold true, the number of Millenial’s will reach 73 million and the number of Baby Boomers will drop to 72 million by the end of next year, according to Richard Fry of Pew Research.
The end of an era.
I can attest to the number of Baby Boomers dropping. In June a friend of mine born in 1950 died. Last week a friend born in 1958 passed away. I always try to attend funerals based on the advice of Yogi Berra, who observed “If you don’t go to your friend’s funerals they won’t go to yours.”
After the shock wore off, I was left with fond memories of both friends who passed away this summer. And that’s despite the fact that the son of one of my friends started his Dad’s eulogy with “My dad . . . Was he a stubborn S.O.B, or what?!”
There’s worse things to be remembered for.
Like the unfortunate guy in the cemetery I visited in Kansas City yesterday. His grave is located way in the corner of an old cemetery near 121st and State Line on the Missouri side. Where he lies was once the small town of New Santa Fe, a stones throw from the western border of the United States when New Santa Fe was incorporated in 1852.
His small marker says, simply, “THE HORSE THIEF”.
I’m not sure how he died, but it is probably a safe assumption that it wasn’t from natural causes.