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Author Topic: In Memory of Ross  (Read 5467 times)
Adri
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***
Posts: 125


« on: July 18, 2013, 11:22:47 PM »

I’ve often joked that anyone who posts on CEDA Forums on the days of topic-related announcements should be selling something, because those are times that the most people will see their posts.

So here’s what I am “selling” today:

Four years ago today, we lost Ross K. Smith. I was extraordinarily privileged to have had Ross as both a coach and a colleague. He still shapes much of how I coach and teach. Even today, a new generation of debaters still learns from him thanks to videos from some of his last lectures that summer.

Three years ago, I asked you a favor, and today I ask you again:

Take a moment today to reach out and thank someone in the debate community for being a part of it. It would mean a lot to me and to those whose lives Ross touched.

If you need a place to start, here’s an idea from Ross, in one of his last posts to Edebate* (which is missing, btw):

"[eDebate] Thanks to our competitors

Ross Smith smithr at wfu.edu
Wed Apr 1 17:38:14 CDT 2009

I've received some e-mail and facebook praise (thanks!). I want to issue
a broader reply.

Maybe it's just too obvious to state, but I've rarely been a person of
few words (once you get me going) . . . .

Thank you competitors. Every one of you, coach and debater, who face our
teams and push our teams to think harder, research deeper, get outside
of our narrower confines. You pose questions to our coaching, without
which questions we could not learn and improve.

On occasion, hopefully rare, we do not reciprocate or we fail to
appreciate. When we (being human) are at our worst we might denigrate. I
hope and trust not, but know that we mean not.

We can't do it without you.

What are the best debates you have judged or debated in? They are
closely contested. They reflect a commitment to excellence. That
atttribute can never be one sided.

We are at our worst and best when we put everything we have into a
debate and come up on the short end. But who gave us the opportunity to
be triumphant and feel that the win was meaningful in the first place?
Our competitors.

Thank you.

--
Ross K. Smith
Director of Debate
Wake Forest University"


Thanks to everyone for reading, and thank you for being part of this community.

-Adri

[*Additional thanks to William Smelko for cross-posting the “Thanks to our competitors” on cross-x.com (http://www.cross-x.com/topic/44038-rip-ross-smith/), and to Seth Gannon for posting it on CEDA Forums (http://www.cedadebate.org/forum/index.php?topic=704.0)]
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SherryHall
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Posts: 1903


« Reply #1 on: July 21, 2013, 06:12:51 AM »

From : Adrienne Brovero

Still miss you so much. Workshops are the hardest - so many great memories. I had some stale Toast Chees out of the vending machine in Carswell a few weeks ago, going to see if I can find them or some Gardetto's today Smiley
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SherryHall
Hero Member
*****
Posts: 1903


« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2013, 06:13:23 AM »

From: Sherry Hall

Someone posted a picture of Gossett the other day, and it almost brought me to tears. We sure do get close with coaches. Take care.
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SherryHall
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Posts: 1903


« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2013, 06:13:50 AM »

From: Jason Mika

 I'll be getting up Sunday to watch the last round of the British Open with eggs, bacon, and hash browns. Only thing missing will be Ross' commentary on the Open.
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SherryHall
Hero Member
*****
Posts: 1903


« Reply #4 on: July 21, 2013, 06:14:26 AM »

From: Marcia Tiersky

Thinking of you today. I wonder what you would've said about the new topic? I hope you guys are debating about it up there.
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SherryHall
Hero Member
*****
Posts: 1903


« Reply #5 on: July 21, 2013, 06:14:54 AM »

From: Gloria Cabada-Leman

Missing you and remembering how much you taught me about debate, critical thinking & analysis, teamwork, life, good beer, and everything else that really matters...
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SherryHall
Hero Member
*****
Posts: 1903


« Reply #6 on: July 21, 2013, 06:15:18 AM »

From: Adam Garen

Every time a debater tells me about the impact I've made on his or her life, I'm reminded of the impact you've made on mine – and my whole families'. ‪#‎gratitude‬ ‪#‎payitforward‬
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SherryHall
Hero Member
*****
Posts: 1903


« Reply #7 on: July 21, 2013, 06:15:48 AM »

From: Joshua Gonzalez

Ross: I'm pretty sure every good thing that has happened to me in the last five or so years stems pretty directly from a conversation we had when you convinced me to go to grad school at Wake. You asked the decidedly Ross-like rhetorical question: "What's the worst thing that could happen? You'll get a Master's degree and then go back to doing whatever lame shit you're doing now?" I got a Master's degree, an amazing education, an even better fiancee, a better job than I ever dreamed, and I got to spend some time with the best coach in the world.

Debate is measurably worse without you around, but I think if there's any way to honor your memory, it's to do the work to transform it into what I want to see. That being said, not a day goes by that I'm not sad because it's just not as awesome without you around.
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SherryHall
Hero Member
*****
Posts: 1903


« Reply #8 on: July 21, 2013, 06:16:39 AM »

From: Allan Louden

Every day on the home front contains legacy. Dept, department, and community are were fundamentally changed . . . Ross is still with us in so many ways.
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SherryHall
Hero Member
*****
Posts: 1903


« Reply #9 on: July 21, 2013, 06:17:03 AM »

From: Norma Craig

Thank you, Marcia. I miss Ross in the family, yet so grateful I see him in so many ways and looks in my wonderful grandson, Alex. We all have good memories of the unique person as Ross. One of my favorite is in the thoughtful note I received from Ross after he married Jayne. He wrote to thank me for my daughter. I wonder how many other son-in-laws have ever done this. He was one of a kind for sure.
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SherryHall
Hero Member
*****
Posts: 1903


« Reply #10 on: July 21, 2013, 06:17:25 AM »

From: Sam Maurer

Not a single day of coaching goes by where I don't remember your advice about something. I still don't know if I've learned every lesson that you taught me. But I know that perhaps the most important one is to take care of and love your family. (it's up there with "debate the argument, not the team" Wink Thanks Ross. I miss you.
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SherryHall
Hero Member
*****
Posts: 1903


« Reply #11 on: July 21, 2013, 06:17:48 AM »

From: Tod Woodbury

Finally got something Ross told me 13 years ago .... God,was I stupid !!!
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SherryHall
Hero Member
*****
Posts: 1903


« Reply #12 on: July 21, 2013, 06:18:15 AM »

From: Seungwon Chung

Ross, you are the one that convinced me to strive to be a leader rather than a follower. You convinced me to get my m.a. You've impacted my life in a significant way and I can only hope to make you proud.
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SherryHall
Hero Member
*****
Posts: 1903


« Reply #13 on: July 21, 2013, 12:48:38 PM »

From: Brian DeLong   

Ross brought be back from the edge of leaving the activity after inviting me to have a conversation over coffee. I take his family like commitment to debaters and coaches to heart. Friendly conversations over coffee, dinner, or just about life is what's important.
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Adri
Full Member
***
Posts: 125


« Reply #14 on: July 19, 2015, 01:01:24 PM »

Six years ago today, we lost Ross K. Smith. I was extraordinarily privileged to have had Ross as both a coach and a colleague. He still shapes much of how I coach and teach. Even today, a new generation of debaters still learns from him thanks to videos from some of his last lectures that summer.

Each year since, I have asked you a favor, and today I ask you again:

Take a moment today to reach out and thank someone in the debate community for being a part of it. It would mean a lot to me and to those whose lives Ross touched.

If you need a place to start, here’s an idea from Ross, in one of his last posts to Edebate*:

"[eDebate] Thanks to our competitors

Ross Smith smithr at wfu.edu
Wed Apr 1 17:38:14 CDT 2009

I've received some e-mail and facebook praise (thanks!). I want to issue
a broader reply.

Maybe it's just too obvious to state, but I've rarely been a person of
few words (once you get me going) . . . .

Thank you competitors. Every one of you, coach and debater, who face our
teams and push our teams to think harder, research deeper, get outside
of our narrower confines. You pose questions to our coaching, without
which questions we could not learn and improve.

On occasion, hopefully rare, we do not reciprocate or we fail to
appreciate. When we (being human) are at our worst we might denigrate. I
hope and trust not, but know that we mean not.

We can't do it without you.

What are the best debates you have judged or debated in? They are
closely contested. They reflect a commitment to excellence. That
atttribute can never be one sided.

We are at our worst and best when we put everything we have into a
debate and come up on the short end. But who gave us the opportunity to
be triumphant and feel that the win was meaningful in the first place?
Our competitors.

Thank you.

--
Ross K. Smith
Director of Debate
Wake Forest University"


Thanks to everyone for reading, and thank you for being part of this community.

-Adri

[*Additional thanks to William Smelko for cross-posting the “Thanks to our competitors” on cross-x.com (http://www.cross-x.com/topic/44038-rip-ross-smith/), and to Seth Gannon for posting it on CEDA Forums (http://www.cedadebate.org/forum/index.php?topic=704.0)]
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