Eight Bells - Norman Reese
Long Lake, IL; C boater, Sailing Supporter
With the onset of Scowlines, Jim Smith and the editor developed a policy regarding the posting of obituaries. Ignoring that policy now demonstrates an understanding of why this sport is so unique.
Norman Reese of Long Lake, IL passed away early Saturday after a ten-year+ battle with dementia. His last great moment in the sailing world was at the Geneva ILYA Championships where so many of you stopped to greet him. His broad grin as you knelt down to him in his wheelchair speaks volumes of what the memories of Normie at regattas blazened in your heart. Every WYA C, every C Regional, Invitational and Championship saw the Reese family in tow as Normie supported the C fleet. At Geneva, it was about saying goodbye to a friend but it was also about cherishing the friendships developed simply by attending regattas.
Norman Reese never won an ILYA Championship or Nationals. He DID meet you there and compete. He was part of this family we all celebrate all summer, every year, every regatta. That evening he flirted with the editor like we were youngsters. His charm led me to hope he was recalling the early years when he was so vital, so active. Thank you to all of you who spent the time that night to wish him on his way. It was poignant to watch throughout the evening.
One of my fondest memories of late was visiting with him a couple years ago, when he was still articulate. We were at his home standing in front of pictures of the family. He paused to reminisce and asked if I knew how beautiful his wife was as we looked at photos from the early years. He proudly recalled her accomplishments in the WYA and ILYA - as though I did not know this about my best friend. But his thoughts were on his family and what role sailing played in their lives. He looked at pictures of his daughters Katie and Kelly remarking on their sailing prowess. It was joyful for him to remember his past but I was struck by the role sailing has played in his life. Isn't it true of so many of us? Our joyous moments are often centered in this fine sport and what it has developed in our own families and the broader sailing community we call "family".
Norman will be honored at a service on Wednesday in Lake Villa, IL at the Ringa funeral home. He will be there 9-11:00 (service at 11:00) - cared for by his Long Lake family. The Ringas are lifelong friends. They buried their own father so very recently. The raucous Long Lake friends will be there remembering the antics. Hopefully, making an appearance will be the C scow poster of Normie and Suzi and Buddy and Gordy and Biwer and Hiller and on and on all sitting on Harleys. There will be joy recalling the shenanigans of the Long Lake crowd. Though small, their lake is large in stories and fun. Theirs is a story like so many we can all share; it's what inland lake sailing has developed with our strong homelake racing and first rate regattas where we all attend - most of us like Norman Reese - to make the event more full of fun.
And to those of you who had Norman bail you out of a jam at one time or other (that includes some youngsters in the fleet today), come and say goodbye to one of the forefathers of the C fleet - a regular guy, a nice guy, an avid sailor whose smile lit up a room. He was a gentleman to the end with only automatic speech in his severely declined state that always denoted a spirit of respect for his friends.
Norman, you were a gentle man with a smile that illuminated the world when you saw your family up to the end. You still saved that smile for me each time I saw you. But I was just one of many and not the right one. You may not have remembered her name in the end but you were always looking for Suzi when she was out of your sight. When she appeared in a room, you felt comfortable enough to doze or rest. All was well.
Rest, my dear Normie. The race is now over. The last downwind leg was difficult. You crossed the finish line with all of us following you still waiting to cross.
SAVE THE DATE
Race Committee and Judges Offerings
The ILYA will sponsor three courses in SE WI area. Mark your calendars now. Registration is not setup with US Sailing at this time.
March 17-18 Lake Geneva YC, Fontana, WI
Advanced two day course for RC work.
Registration will be through US Sailing but local contact will be Terry Blanchard
. Instructors John Strassman and Hank Stuart
April 6-7 Harken headquarters - Pewaukee, WI I-94 corridor
Rules discussion, Friday night; Judges course, Saturday
Local contact - Dave Berg
; Instructor Bruce Martinson
Registration through US Sailing - not established as of 11/7/18
If you serve on your homelake's protest committee or serve at the regatta level, this certification is most helpful.
April 28 - 29 Harken headquarters - Pewaukee, WI I-94 corridor
Basic Race Committee course
Local contact - Dave Berg
; Instructor John Strassman
This is a fast-paced course which handles the basic administration of a race course, the rules that apply for running a regatta/race, tricks of the trade. Registration for the course through US Sailing.
New offering - Dave Dellenbaugh sailing seminar for all sailors of any skill level. Either March 10th or 17th. Dave is setting up another seminar for the Sunday after so the date will be announced shortly. Lake Beulah will welcome you. More later.
Sheboygan Asks for Assistance for Para Sailing World Championships in September
Boats and Manpower
Request from Whitney Kent
September 16th-22nd we will be playing host to the Para World Sailing Championship, where we are expecting 100 disabled sailors from around 40 countries. This presents a unique challenge for us, both because of the broad scope of disabilities we will need to accommodate as well as the amount of support personnel we are expecting. That said, we are excited to have been granted the opportunity to bring this event to Wisconsin!
I'm hoping we can look to the Inland for support in a few ways. Because of the number of coaches traveling internationally, we simply do not have the resources to provide enough powerboats for charter. What I'm looking to do is compile a list of power boats people would be willing to charter that we can send to competitors looking to charter a coach boat. Boat owners can set their own price for the week. This is an opportunity for sailing schools to make money on inflatables before they are put away for the season.
Second, we are, of course, going to be looking for people who are willing to volunteer with us, both shore-side and on the water. Because the event is so long and during the week, we are anticipating people could help out for a day or two at a time. This will be a manpower-heavy event, due to the nature of para sailing along with the fact it's a world championship.
Please contact me with your questions or ability to assist