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Remembering a gentleman

To the Telegram: This week our community lost a true gentleman. I first had the opportunity to meet this gentleman, Skip Smith, about 20 years ago as my father-in-law's hunting partner. I looked in the Webster dictionary for the definition of a "...

To the Telegram:

This week our community lost a true gentleman.

I first had the opportunity to meet this gentleman, Skip Smith, about 20 years ago as my father-in-law's hunting partner. I looked in the Webster dictionary for the definition of a "gentleman" and found several definitions but to me this one is Skip, "A man whose conduct conforms to a high standard of propriety or correct behavior." It wasn't hard to find, in the edition I had you could see a picture of Skip next to the definition.

As time went on, I got to know Skip through the Chamber, sitting in the whirlpool at the YMCA and the last several years I had the opportunity and privilege to sit by Skip and Bernie Tomzak during both the Superior High School boys and girls basketball games. I don't think there was a bigger fan than Skip. He not only attended all of the home games but made travel plans that allowed him to see many of the road games as well. He knew each player's name whether they played on varsity or JV. He was always there to offer words of encouragement and support to each and every member of the team. The passion and love that he showed for all of the players and their hard work was wonderful. He will be truly missed. I will say this to all current and future players, that voice you hear coming from the rafters, that will be Skip's.

It's been 31 years since I lost my parents and I have come to understand that even though we may not know God's plan for us, he does have one. And if you want to hear God laugh, "Tell him about your plans." What I do know is that we are not guaranteed anything in our life so we need to remember to enjoy the time we have. Vince Lombardi once said you need to put God first, family second and yourself third; I think Skip was a fine example of this.

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Unfortunately, I have had to ask myself way too often over the years, how do you say goodbye to a friend? The only way I have found to say goodbye is, first, we will always have the memories of what you meant to us, and the time we spent together. Second, I'll continue to keep this Irish pray around until we meet again. "May the road rise up to meet us, may the wind be always be at our back, may the sun shine warm upon our faces, and rain fall softly upon our fields, and until we meet again, may God hold us in the hollow of His hand."

Goodbye Skip and thanks for sharing your boat cushions.

Our world today has lost a true gentleman.

David Minor,

President/CEO,

The Chamber

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