The other day, I received a few forwarded emails. It said that Dick Smith passed away. When I read the obituary, it didn’t quite hit me.
That was until today..
Back in 2006, I decided to leave the investment industry. I wanted a simple office job, where I could finish my degree without any stress. However, companies couldn’t understand why a former investment broker wanted to take a position like this. My childhood best friend’s father introduced me to a company called Nagelbush Mechanical, Inc.
They offered me a receptionist opportunity with a salary to match. It was exactly what I wanted. Shortly after I got the job, I started college again. It was stress-free, and I was happy.
That was when I met Dick Smith. I was in my 20’s, back in school and answering phone calls for eight to nine hours-a-day. Somehow 5 1/2 years passed, and I was still working there. At that point, I worked in the accounting, estimating and marketing department.
There was one catch though – the company didn’t have a marketing department. I proposed they build one, and I would manage it. Fortunately for me, they did just that. I created brochures, portfolios and other marketing materials.
Throughout my time there, I had a lot of heart-to-heart talks with Dick Smith. His advice was always so on point. From journeymen plumbers to general contractor executives, this was a man who impacted so many lives. He was an all-around good guy.
Tonight, I attended his wake. I walked in and was instantly greeted by numerous familiar faces. As I hugged my way towards the front, I found his wife and daughter. His daughter worked at Nagelbush too. I gave her hug and my condolences. We chatted a few minutes before the next group of people grabbed her attention.
I was near the casket, but I couldn’t look yet.
I walked around the room, and greeted more people that I haven’t seen in years. It was a pleasant evening. Towards the end, I sat in the back row to take a moment. I thought about my last day at Nagelbush.
Dick Smith came to visit me at my desk before I walked out those doors forever. He wished me the best on my new journey into digital marketing. We had this talk about my goals, and why I resigned slightly earlier than originally planned. I was completely honest, and he respected that.
One of my favorite memories of Dick Smith was how he always believed in me. He was the man who would listen and encourage the best in someone to shine.
After all these happy memories came back, I finally looked up at the coffin. I saw him there, and I felt my heart get heavier. I paid my respects, and said my goodbyes.
Dick Smith will always be an influential person in my life and many others. May you rest in peace.