Rex Lee Smith… "Gee Dee"

I had the honor of being the first born grandchild of two of the greatest men ever…they were both WWII vets, and they were the epitome of “gentleman” in every sense of the word. The first, Edward Wheatley Hyman, “E. Dub”, as I called him, passed away when I was in high school, and I carry him with me every day.  My mom’s dad, who I called Gee Dee, because I could never pronounce “Granddaddy”, had been fighting a battle with Alzheimers for a little while now.  On December 6th, he left us, and I will miss him always.  In the meantime, I am reminding myself to be grateful for the time that we had with him.  He taught all of us so much, and he instilled his love of the water in all of us-  I will never go near the Bay again without feeling his presence. He also left us with so many life lessons.  My grandfather treated everyone with such dignity and respect, and his kindness to others will never be forgotten.   I was fortunate to be able to have him in my life for as long as I did.  What I am most thankful for is that he had the chance to meet my daughter, and she had the opportunity to meet him.

I feel the void of the presence that he held so deeply, but I am blessed that he was able to see me, my siblings, and my cousins into young adulthood and adulthood.  My sister-in-law sent me a card that contained the following quote:  “They lived and laughed and loved and left… And the world will never be the same.” – James Joyce.