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Posted on June 12th, 2009 at 9:15 am, in MMC Swimming, MMC Water Polo, Modesto-Stanislaus Water Polo, Newsletter


The swimming and water polo community lost a beloved friend and coach with the passing of Kirk on June 10th. ¬†Although the newspapers focus on his many accomplishments as a businessman and local activist, I saw a much different individual. ¬†I still remember when Kirk first appeared on the coaching scene, most coaches first comments were things like, “who is that guy?” ¬†Here was a loud, self-confident individual who came out of nowhere to coach the Beyer water polo team. ¬†I remember fellow coaches at the time commenting on how “physical” the Beyer boys were in their polo game, as a fellow coach I took it upon myself to confront this new coach about the style that his boys were playing. ¬†Kirk just looked at me and laughed. ¬†What an introduction to a guy who would later on become one of my best friends in the aquatic world. ¬†Kirk always had a way about himself that let you know exactly where you stood with him, it wasn’t just his voice, but it was also with his mannerisms. ¬†On another occasion, Kirk sold a used family Astrovan to our family. ¬†No sooner than we took it home that the air conditioner broke. ¬†Taking it back to Kirk and saying that the air conditioner had broken, etc., were were shocked when Kirk just looked at us and laughed (I guess that is when I first learned about buyer beware).

As the years passed it became very evident to me that Kirk enjoyed enormously the world of coaching. ¬†We spoke often on how part of why we got along was that I was always curious about his “world” of business, and he was about my world of “coaching.” ¬†Coaches soon saw in Kirk his sincere interest in kids and in coaching; he was affectionately called by his fellow coaches “Lexus Kirk.” ¬†He once traveled to Colorado Springs for a Christmas water polo camp for young kids. ¬†I told him that he would be treated as a “rookie” coach and have to carry the balls, caps, etc. ¬†Kirk quickly responded that he didn’t care, he just wanted to learn. ¬†When we would hold coaches clinics in Modesto from the national team, Kirk would always sign up and attend the classes; always wanting to learn more. ¬†During the off season of water polo and swimming I would periodically get calls from Kirk wanting to know how everything was going in the aquatics world. ¬†Whenever the Beyer pool was needed to help out in hosting tournaments in Modesto, you could always count on Kirk to volunteer the pool to provide ¬†game space for visiting teams. ¬†But it wasn’t just water polo, during swim season at the section championships Kirk for a number of years would always be there to be the “voice” of our championships. ¬†Many people would comment that he was the “voice of God” for the event.

But in all of his involvement he was a true friend.  He was not tolerant of coaches who were short sighted, and tended to be to focused on their own particular world, and he let others know that. He always professed that it was the big picture of what we were trying to build in the kids that was the most important thing that we do.  Kirk was a great friend, and he will be so sorely missed by all who had the opportunity to have gotten to know him.  To us in the aquatic world he was not a businessman, nor activist, he was one of us Р- Р- Рand will always be remembered

With love



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