Celebrating a great man’s vigorous
Rev. Stacy Groscup
Author with Rev. Groscup
in West Virginia
is a beautiful time. The hot, humid days of summer slowly give way
to cooler days and crisp fall nights. The woods comes alive
with brilliant hues of reds, oranges, and yellows. It’s a time of
letting go as those same leaves begin their ascent onto the forest
floor. Like life, the seasons represent a circle, never
changing and never ending. In the Spring life in the forest will
with a heavy heart I write that West
Virginia native Rev. Stacy Groscup passed away
in the wee hours this morning. Around 1 AM on September 20th, 2005
he left behind a frail body that his spirit, energy, and intellect
had worn out during his 84 years here.
Like Teddy Roosevelt, Stacy
had great stamina and lived a vigorous life until the very
end. He was never sick until about 8 weeks ago when a heart attack
required him to have five bypasses. From that point on Stacy’s life was an
uphill battle with several setbacks. However, he made the most of it
until the very end. As a matter of fact, his last words were sharing
hunting stories from days gone by with old friends.
taught me that life, like the seasons, was a circle. A never ending
circle. My Christian faith tells me that Stacy’s body was worn frail
by his recent illness but that his spirit/soul is now in Heaven.
Groscup was larger than life and was a legend in the archery world.
However he was a humble man who’d fished with the President of the United States,
spoke and performed in front of thousands, and yet always had time to speak to
a child or a stranger.
warm smile, gentle manner and outspoken kindness were his trademarks. He
touched people. He had lived a full and rich life, surrounded in the end
by his loving wife and family.
convinced Stacy was content in the way his life had played out. He
had been a mentor and friend to so many, and will always be loved and
remembered for his generous spirit and his wisdom.
In days to come I am sure there will
be articles, stories and tales told of this great man and his accomplishments
with a bow and arrow and in the other arenas in which he
excelled. However, this evening I am focusing on the man and will
in due time write down some anecdotes, tales and remembrances from our days
together afield and on stage. His story and mine
are connected, since his father Baptized my father when he was born and
Stacy tossed the first aerial target I ever shot at.
never told anyone he was a preacher or a Christian. Like Jesus, you could
see it in the way he carried himself, treated those around him, and lived his
life. His actions told you what kind of a man he was. He went
through his time here on earth doing good.
lived with the Indians during his days in seminary while doing a research
project on their religion, Stacy learned great respect for these people
and their customs and religion. He often emphasized that these were a
moral, religious people that had great respect for our earth and for each
other. He often spoke of the Indian’s contributions to our modern day
world. I know he admired the way they utilized all of any animal
that they harvested.
times I heard him speak of the circle and it’s symbolism to the Indian.
Life, he taught, was a never ending circle to those that had faith. Love
was also a never ending circle. He also taught me the meaning of the
word, “Sti-ute”. This phrase meant “be
strong”. Morally, physically, and mentally strong.
closing, I am reminded of the story about ISHI and Saxton Pope when ISHI was on
his deathbed. He said to Pope, “I go, you stay..”
While saying goodbye is never easy, it is a relief to know that Stacy’s soul is
no longer limited to the frail, weak body that he’d worn out by 84 years
of adventures from a vigorous lifestyle.
Stacy had an ISHI bow in his
collection so this is a fitting way to close a tribute to my friend, my
“second father” as he often called himself, and the best instinctive
archer our sport has known. While he will be missed I will see to
it that his name is never forgotten as long as I have strength to speak and
pull a bow string. I rarely do a stage show or media interview without mentioning
his name. I have never minded playing second fiddle to this great man.
than ten years ago Stacy made me a soft, leather tab to use on my fingers when
I shoot my bow. I carry this tab in my wallet and have used it for every
show I’ve done since the day he gave it to me. He made me some back ups
but I have always carried this original tab. It will serve now to
remind me of his memory and the lessons learned from this great man will
always be close. I simply hope that I can do his memory justice and try
and follow the trails he has blazed.
friend. We love you and will miss you.
If you have a story, comment or anecdote about the
late Rev. Stacy Groscup I hope that you will email me. I will be
happy to forward these to his family. Send them to: Aspirinbuster@aol.com