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Keeping the legacy of Simms alive

December 4, 2012
The Inter-Mountain

At Saturday's memorial service for Roy Simms, family and friends of the late Elkins sports legend and youth mentor said time and time again that his favorite saying was, "I am blessed."

As his loved ones spoke about Simms Saturday, many of them would pause during a story and look at the crowd, then add, "And you know what Roy always said ..."

And the crowd said back in unison, "I am blessed."

Indeed, Simms knew from a young age that he was blessed with tremendous athletic ability. He made great use of that ability, setting records at Elkins High School and starring for the University of Detroit's basketball squad.

As an adult, Simms worked hard to make sure that youngsters less fortunate than himself also received blessings. He set up the Give Back Foundation, which helped children attend sports camps and also set up meetings between local youth and famous athletes and coaches.

During Saturday's memorial, longtime friend Dan Armentrout said the best way to remember Simms would be to keep his foundation going.

"Roy would want us to put to use the things we saw him doing," Armentrout said. "We need to carry on his legacy with the Give Back Foundation. We need to show kids what Roy Simms was about."

We think Armentrout has a great idea, and believe local leaders should get involved to keep the foundation active, providing help for local kids in Simms' memory.

Another lifelong friend, Voras Haynes Jr., said Saturday that all of Elkins was blessed to have had Simms. We agree, and feel supporting the Give Back Foundation would be a great way to keep that connection alive.



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