In Memoriam

Gabe Cordova

May 26, 2023
Dear River Hillers,
It is with great sorrow that I inform you of the passing of our friend and fellow member, Gabe Cordova. Gabe died peacefully on May 24th at the age of 92. Our hearts go out to his family and especially the love of his life, Marion.
Gabe Cordova was a Legend in the River Hills Ski Club. He was a Lifetime Member, a past President, a recipient of the Ken Vought Award, and he was very involved with the Connecticut Ski Council for many years. Gabe and Marion raised their children here, and his children’s children continue as active members. As a Lifetime Member, Gabe wasn’t required to attend work weekends, but he and Marion did, even as recently as last October, and that speaks volumes about their character and their love for River Hills. The impact that he had on our club cannot be overstated. He helped to direct and shape our club through years of volunteering in various roles. I suspect that his charm, and great big smile had an equally important impact.
Before I ever met Gabe, I heard about him. It was clear to me that people loved and admired this guy. Members talked so fondly of him. People wanted to ski with him. They wanted to go up to the club if he was going to be there. Age wasn’t a factor, his friends were his age, or they were 30 years younger, it didn’t matter. He was friendly, kind, and fun-loving. He loved to ski, and he loved this club; he treated the Lodge with pride and the members like family. He was indeed a Legend.
Let’s celebrate the life of Gabe Cordova, tell the stories, raise a glass, keep his memory alive because Legends never die. Gabe will remain forever in the hearts of the members of the River Hills Ski Club.
In sympathy,
Sheila Evers

Gordon Sloat

October 19, 2022

It is with deep sadness that I write to you tonight of the sudden passing of our friend and fellow member, Gordon Sloat. Gordon and his wife Marcia were members of the River Hills for more than 40 years, raising their two sons, Stephen and Scott in the club.
Gordon and Marcia loved to travel and spent much of their time enjoying many trips. It was on their recent trip to Hawaii when Gordon passed away. I know you feel the same shock and sense of sadness as I do at hearing this devastating news.
I met Gordon and Marcia soon after joining the club. They were friendly and helpful, making me feel comfortable and welcomed in the Lodge. The conversation came easily, and I quickly felt at ease in my new surroundings. I then got to know Gordon better in my role as Monthly Coordinator. He was meticulous in making his reservations, and always volunteered to be a Coordinator when he stayed at the Lodge. I never worried, knowing that Gordon had everything under control.
Over the years, Gordon held many roles on the Board of Directors, including Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer. He continued to be an active member and last year, at the age of 80, he volunteered again to serve on the Board. When he called me to volunteer for the new role of Director of Lodge Reconciliation, I wholeheartedly welcomed his participation. In fact, I knew he would be perfect for this role because of his meticulous attention to detail and his strong sense of doing the right thing. Gordon of course was a perfect fit and he brought to the Board a unique perspective of knowing our history and where we have been but also a willingness to embrace changes in our processes.
Few people are so dedicated as to take on a new role after so many years of service to the club. He certainly could have rested on his laurels, but that he didn’t is a testament to his fine character. I truly admire his determination to be of service to the club and remain a vital part of its operations until his final day. He was indeed an exceptional member and an even better man.
Our hearts go out to Marcia, Stephen and Scott and we offer them our deepest condolences.
I wish you peace and good health as we all fondly remember our dear friend Gordon Sloat.
In sympathy,
Sheila Evers

Doug McKay

June 3, 2022
Dear River Hillers,
It is with a heavy heart that I announce the passing of our dear friend and fellow member, Doug McKay. In March Doug was skiing in Montana with his close friends and fellow members, Steve Carbery and Brian Kelly when they noticed that his balance was way off. They got him to the hospital where it was discovered that he had a brain tumor. Doug was flown to Yale-New Haven hospital where he underwent surgery followed by Chemo and radiation. After battling for a few months, last night he passed away with his beloved daughters, Katherine and Caroline at his side.
I first met Doug at the Lodge during our inaugural College Week when he brought his daughters for a ski trip. He was delightful, and it was nice for me to have someone to talk with (as college kids largely ignore us parents). He made me laugh and entertained me with his stories. There was nothing not to like about Doug. He was funny, smart, helpful, and kind. There was no drama, no pretense, no conflicts, just a good-natured soul. When I asked him to join the Board as our Director of Maintenance, he had much the same response to it that I had when Mark asked me to join the Board. Not enthusiasm, but the realization that it was his turn to step up and once committed, he was all in. He led us through 3 very productive work weekends and got the lodge in ship shape. I can’t tell you how many people have remarked to me how great the club looks. His perspective (and being a lawyer) were invaluable to me and the rest of the Board and he will be truly missed.
Wishing you all peace and good health as we remember our friend Doug.
With sympathy,