Simmons recalled as one who always gave back
Howard Simmons has been remembered by some of his colleagues as an accomplished sailor who put a lot back into the sport.
The West End Sailboat Club stalwart passed away last month at the age of 81.
Simmons rose to prominence by winning countless club regattas, including the prestigious Edward Cross Long Distance Comet Race on multiple occasions during a highly decorated career.
“Howard Simmons was a very good skipper,” Gladwin Lambert, the West End Sailboat Club sailor and Comet Class president, said. “He was a reserved sailor who never got frustrated.
“He was easy to sail with and didn’t mind sailing in light or heavy winds. I never heard him complain about he’d rather one than the other.”
The late sailor gave back by introducing newcomers to the sport and grooming youngsters such as future star Stevie Dickinson.
“He would sail the Long Distance Race down to St George’s and let me go in his boat,” Dickinson recalled. “It was an old, dark-green, wooden boat named My Mary.
“I would jump in his boat and sail all across the harbour until he was ready to go back to Somerset. I was about 12, 13 years old and already knew how to sail, so he obviously trusted me and we had lot of fun.
“Howard and I got along pretty good. He was a beautiful man who definitely had a big influence on me.”
Lambert added: “Howard Simmons gave many people a chance at sailing by taking them as a crew.
“He took people that hadn’t sailed before, either on race day or another day that he would plan so that they can experience sailing.”
Simmons also gave back serving in various capacities at West End Sailboat Club.
“Howard was a member of West End Sailboat Club for over 60 years so he definitely was a stalwart,” Lambert said. “He also served as commodore for at least 25 years.
“He is a big loss as an active member for what he has done for West End Sailboat Club in the past.”