Randy Smith: 30 Years Is A Long Time

Tuesday, May 4, 2021 - by Randy Smith
Randy Smith
Randy Smith
The month of May has been designated as Melanoma awareness month, which is ironic since my father passed away on May 3, 1991, after battling Melanoma for exactly one year. He was given a year to live on May 3, 1990, and died a year later. The 30 years that have passed since is a long time, yet it has breezed by like the wind.

I remember May 3, 1991 so vividly. I had been making at least one trip per week to Nashville to see my dad for several weeks and had been there a couple of days earlier for what would be the last time I saw him.
May 3rd was on a Friday that year and my son Davey had a baseball game that afternoon. I was coaching third base when my dad passed away. He died at 6 p.m. EST and at that moment, things seemed to slow down and almost stand still. I didn't know it at the time, but that was the exact moment he died. I felt so helpless because the man that I loved and respected more than any other was gone. The man who supported everything I did and was always there for me would be there no more. 

He taught me about baseball, and other sports. He provided me with Christian guidance and taught me how to love unconditionally. In the final year of his life, as sick as he was, he delivered audio cassette tapes of the sermons from his church, to shut-ins who weren't able to go on Sundays. During the final few months of his life, his doctor offered to give him medical marijuana to ease the terrible pain he was in. He refused because of the bad influence it could have on his grandchildren. He was the greatest man I ever knew and I told him that the last time I saw him.

Last fall, my daughter Christi found a suspicious place on her leg and, because of what she had witnessed my father go through when she was 12 years old, she went to a dermatologist and had it checked out. Sure enough, it was Melanoma but due to the fact that she got to it early, she is cancer-free. Christi gives her grandfather complete credit for saving her life, some 30 years later.

Cancer, especially Melanoma, is an incredibly awful disease. Doctors and scientists have made great strides in the last 30 years but there is still no cure, Now, as it was then, early detection is the best way to defeat it.  My father never knew he would give his life to save the life of his granddaughter 30 years after his death but he did. In the words of a Lefty Frizzell/Merle Haggard song, "That's the way love goes."

------


Randy Smith can be reached at rsmithsports@epbfi.com

Four Covenant Players Earn All-USA South Baseball Honors

Meg Buchanan, Susan Street, Katie Young, And MJ Levine Finish 1st In CWGA Action

Mocs Set To Defend SoCon Softball Tournament Championship


Four Covenant baseball players collected All-USA South West Division honors, as the league unveiled its season awards on Thursday. Senior Alex Gonzalez earned first team All-West, while senior ... (click for more)

Here are the CWGA Play Day Results for Tuesday. Play was at the Chattanooga Golf and Country Club. 1, 2, 3 Team Play 1st Place Meg Buchanan, Susan Street, Katie Young, and ... (click for more)

The No. 3 seeded Chattanooga Mocs softball team is set to open the 2021 Southern Conference Tournament tomorrow, Thursday, May 13 against No. 2 Western Carolina at 3 p.m. ET on ESPN+ inside UNCG ... (click for more)



Sports

Four Covenant Players Earn All-USA South Baseball Honors

Four Covenant baseball players collected All-USA South West Division honors, as the league unveiled its season awards on Thursday. Senior Alex Gonzalez earned first team All-West, while senior Brooks DuBose, and juniors Hunter Christian and Joseph Ridenour were second team All-West selections. Gonzalez was also Covenant's representative on the All-Sportsmanship team. All ... (click for more)

Meg Buchanan, Susan Street, Katie Young, And MJ Levine Finish 1st In CWGA Action

Here are the CWGA Play Day Results for Tuesday. Play was at the Chattanooga Golf and Country Club. 1, 2, 3 Team Play 1st Place Meg Buchanan, Susan Street, Katie Young, and MJ Levine -11 2nd Place ( 2 way tie) Kathy Vaughn, Seong Glickman, Pat Wilson, and Evelyn Marie Williams -9 Lynn McGee, Candy Feher, Kandy Berke, and Patty Jones -9 Low Gross: ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Parent Group Calls For Mask Mandate In Schools To End Now; Opponent Says Just Wait A Few Days

A group carrying signs and shouting slogans told members of the County School Board on Thursday night they want a school mask mandate to end now. Supt. Bryan Johnson earlier said on June 1 - a couple of weeks away - staff and students are not required to wear masks to ward off the coronavirus. A leader of the protest group said, "That's not good enough. It should be parents' ... (click for more)

2 Killed, 1 Injured In Shooting Wednesday Night On Ridgeside Road

DeQuan Paris, 25, and LaRome Ridley, 20, were killed and a 29-year-old man was injured in a shooting on Ridgeside Road Wednesday evening. The two men who died are brothers. They have two other brothers. Their mother, Amanda Del “Rat” Paris, died last Dec. 3 at age 39. Chattanooga Police responded to the 3600 block of Ridgeside Road on a report of a person shot at approximately ... (click for more)

Opinion

What Is The Price Of Democracy?

Most United States citizens consider ourselves fortunate to live in a modern, mature democracy. We appreciate the great freedoms and abundant material things our democracy affords us. But while we all know the old adage that freedom is not free, neither is democracy. Our system depends on citizens’ being in ultimate control of the government through a written constitution with checks ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: That’s ‘Nonya’ Business

In the Sunday editions of the Chattanooga Times Free Press the editors will often include a feature on “fake news,” or “News That’s Not” but I don’t suspect them to include themselves in the junk report this weekend. The Chattanooga newspaper once again stumbled Thursday when they had an embarrassing lead story on the front page. The headline read, “DA accused of marrying employee, ... (click for more)