Vojislav Batta Vujicic passed away peacefully on Aug. 27 at his home in Agoura Hills. Batta, age 71, had fought a five-month battle with esophageal cancer and lived up to the meaning of his name, “Glorious Warrior.”
I met Batta many years ago and the one thing I remember most vividly was his smile. He had a smile that radiated warmth and kindness. A smile that could make you cheerful on your darkest day. More importantly, it never seemed forced. It was the smile of a genuine friend who was happy to see you. The writer Alan Watts once said, “We know that from time to time, there arise among human beings, people who seem to exude love as naturally as the sun gives out heat.” I could not think of a more apt sentiment to describe Batta.
When I reflect on the character of Batta, I find it to be beyond reproach. He was a man of strong faith and conviction, and he lived his life as such. When I was young, I was a proud member of the Boy Scouts. We were taught about “Scout Law” and what character traits made a good Scout and, in turn, a good man. A Scout is trustworthy, loyal, helpful, friendly, courteous, kind, obedient, cheerful, thrifty, brave, clean and reverent. Batta epitomized these values. He was the kind of man we should all strive to be in our own lives.
Batta will be sorely missed by all those who knew him. I believe the true measure of a man is in the lives he has touched and impacted for the better. Batta is among those special few that when we reflect on his life, we remark on our good fortune for having had the honor of calling him a friend. He will surely be missed, but we are consoled by the understanding that he is at peace in a better place.
Howard P. “Buck” McKeon
Member of U.S. Congress 1992-2015