Michael W. "Morgan" Bard (20 October 1965 – 19 March 2010) was a transformation/furry author, former co-editor of the furry e-zine Anthro as well as the now defunct transformation e-zine TSAT. His character sometimes took a centaur form, though he was known to travel in other forms as well.
Bard's interests included hard science fiction such as John Varley or Robert Heinlein, and his work in turn tends to focus on heavily scientific themes. His writing was also influenced by humorous sci-fi such as Larry Niven's work. Michael was also a fan of pen and paper roleplaying games, miniatures wargaming and military history. He was a skilled miniatures painter. Michael had a degree in science from the University of Waterloo.
A common theme of Bard's transformation stories is characters who quickly try to accept and deal with the situation of becoming another creature instead of staying in a state of denial, but not going as far as to eschew their former activities or responsibilities, either. For instance, the main character in the story ""A Diary of a Centaur in a Human's World" wakes up one morning to find himself changed into a centaur. After some initial adjustment difficulties, the character makes his way to work, not about to let a thing like turning into a centaur keep him from his job.
This pragmatism is used in Bard's stories either seriously or humorously given the situation, and sometimes, both at once. In "A Diary," the protagonist gets into an argument with the ticket taker at a subway station over his entering the train. The main character makes the reasonable argument that he needs to use the train to get to work on time while the ticket taker makes the equally reasonable counterargument that it would be ludicrous to allow a centaur on the train.
Bard's work frequently deals with the city of Toronto and his affinity for it, and he sometimes playfully referred to Americans as "Rebel Scum," a reference to a line from the movie Return of the Jedi.
Aneurysm and Death
On the evening of Friday, March the 12th, approximately halfway through his shift at a gas station, Michael "Morgan" Bard was recorded on security camera footage as he collapsed at work. He was working alone, and was found approximately 4 hours later by his relief, who noticed something was wrong due to the gas station not being locked up. While breathing, he was unconscious and unresponsive. He was immediately rushed to Toronto Western Hospital, which is the best stroke/brain injury clinic in the country.
On Sunday the 14th, at approximately 1 PM Eastern Time, the doctors pulled the ventilator, to verify that Michael's autonomic systems were still intact. He immediately started to breathe on his own, although with occasional difficulty. At this point, the doctors report that the swelling of the brain had stopped and they placed him on "saturation level" (maximum) Oxygen to attempt to help his brain recover.
Unfortunately, this was a false hope. On March 18th, 2010, the results of Michael's brain scans came back. There was extensive, permanent damage to his brain and zero chance of recovery. The family, with support of the doctors, decided to remove all life support other than pain medicine and allow him to pass on peacefully, something that fate chose for him to do on the morning of Friday, March 19th, 2010..
Michael's family and friends were able to say goodbye to him in the hospital. Jacob O'hare was also able to be at his side, as well as some of his friends in the Toronto furry community. The funeral took place in Kitchener-Waterloo, Michael's hometown. Michael was buried with one of his favorite science-fiction novels.
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