Community mourns loss of teacher and football coach
MISHAWAKA, Ind.-- The tragic news of 46-year-old Gregg Smith’s passing, completely shocking and devastating the Mishawaka Cavemen community. While the school and loved ones mourn his loss, they also reminisce on the amazing person he was and the memories they shared.
“He was loyal. Gregg was a loyal individual,” Mishawaka Director of Student Services Jerome Calderone said.
A loyal teacher, a loyal coach and a loyal friend.
Smith was a Mishawaka High School alum and star football and wrestling player, who made his way back to his alma mater, spending nearly 3 decades coaching and teaching cavemen students.
“He was highly involved. Not only did he teach a full load but he was assistant football coach, helped out with wrestling early on in his career, national honors society sponsor, department chair, I mean he did a lot of things but he did them well, he did them the right way,” Calderone said.
Tuesday morning, the Mishawaka community woke up to devastating news, that one of their very own, passed away in a tragic accident Monday evening.
“I can’t believe it. Can’t believe it,” Calderone said. “It wasn’t the kind of news you want to receive ever.”
Smith was known for his love and passion for his athletes and students, and it showed.
“Kids enjoyed being in his classroom. I’m not sure if I ever had a kid come down and complain about Mr. Smith,” Calderone said. “As a building administrator, it’s okay to say he did a good job and he always did a good job in his classroom and came prepared to help his kids the best he could.”
Students, athletes' and Mishawaka staff alike, say Gregg was much more than just teacher and coach.
“He was a friend to a lot of people. Gregg had a lot of friends because of the way he treated ya, the respect he showed towards ya and his professional approach to living life,” Calderone said.
Smith was a husband and a father to two sons.