He always greeted me with a smile. Bill Hoover was one of the nicest and kindest persons I have ever known. Sadly, Bill passed away this past weekend.
I didn’t see Bill often but when I did it was uplifting. I would see him from time to time at a public event or at a ball game and the meeting was always the same. As we met I would see that big smile come on his face.
The conversations were always pleasant and inspiring. He, more than any other person, complimented me on my work and columns in this newspaper. He made me feel good.
Bill told me many times how much he liked my sister, Bena Mae’s column. Two years ago when I went to Clinton, Tn. for her funeral services the first thing I noticed were flowers sent from Bill Hoover and Pepsi-Cola.
He was that kind of person. If he was your friend, and I repeat that he had many, you didn’t have to question it. I’m sure he had done the same thing for many others.
For many years, dating back longer than I can remember, I looked forward to receiving a Christmas card from Bill. He never missed a year sending one. I’m sure he sent many of them to friends, probably in the hundreds. What made it so special was he always wrote a personal note in it.
At times in our small talk a subject would come up on doing something positive for the town or for the Redhound teams, both of which he dearly loved.
His remarks echo in my head now as his sentences would be short but have impact. He would look down at the floor shaking his head affirmatively and say things like, “Yes, that needs to be done,” and then repeat the sentence again.
And he got things done better than anybody I have ever known. He had great ideas and when he stood behind a project you could count on it being a success.
He never wanted the spotlight, actually he avoided it, but he was there and responsible for many youth and civic projects.
There are scoreboards in gyms everywhere that were purchased by Pepsi and young people in every part of southeastern Kentucky have a uniform or jersey because Bill cared and supported them.
When I was announcing Corbin football games on the radio several years ago I talked Bill in to being my color commentator. He was very good at it. I believe that bonded us and created the mutual respect that we had for each other.
There were so many events and projects that Bill was involved in. I know a few, but those few are more than most people ever get connected with.
He was very involved with the Redhound Varsity Club from day one. The Club has contributed greatly to the sports programs at Corbin High School.
Philanthropist. Unique. Caring. Friendly. Progressive. Businessman. Leader. Supportive. There are many adjactives that can describe Bill Hoover, all in a positive way.
His death has been devasting and sad to everybody who has ever known him. He had multitude of friends and there is a reason for that because he was genuine through and through.
Corbin will never be the same without him. I’m sure Pepsi will still offer the support and involvement to the many youth and civic programs as it has for years, but we will miss Bill’s touch.
Rarely does a person like Bill Hoover come along. Now that he is gone I suggest that he be remembered with some kind of memorial by the town and school.
Bill left us with something to strive for. It would be great and the world would be a much better place if all of us could attach to our face that smile and warmth that Bill had to offer.
Our condolenses to the Hoover family. Bill will be missed.
My friend, R.I.P.