It Does Not Matter How Slowly You Go, As Long As You Do Not Stop.
It is with the most profound sadness that I report that my friend and colleague, real estate attorney Steve Smarr, succumbed to his battle with pancreatic cancer earlier today, June 27th.
As many of you know — Steve had been battling pancreatic cancer since early 2017 when he was diagnosed in Stage 4 of the disease. In January 2018 we decided to join our closing practices to give him a chance to devote his full efforts to fighting this beast. His practice manager and chief paralegal, Cindy Cantrell, remains a current and ongoing member of the Hartmanlaw team. With the full support of his wife Kathy and his son Zachary and daughter Taylor, Steve devoted all of his energy over the past year to treatment and doing everything he could do to maintain a positive attitude about the task of beating cancer. Our hearts are heavy, and sincere condolences are offered to you — Kathy, Zachary and Taylor — in this time of loss of your husband and dad.
Pancreatic cancer is one of the worst. It took my own father earlier this year.
And to be completely honest, Steve Smarr confused me and amazed me every day over the past year. He may have quietly been dying behind the façade — but for goodness sake, He Would Not Stop Living.
“Send me title work to review.” “And by the way, I expect to see some reports for the profit sharing.” (This was but barely a month ago). His mind never faltered. Steve Smarr had no “quit” in him. And for those of you that knew Steve and know real estate, you’ll truly agree he was one of the most cautious-thinking, analytical title attorneys in our business. A true advocate for the purchaser.
I wish I had the pleasure of knowing Steve Smarr longer than just a few years. He is worthy of a better eulogy than this one, to be sure. Even as he was suffering through his own battle with cancer, he actually would counsel me on how to come to terms with my own dad’s battle with the same disease. I could ask Steve things about the personal side of the struggle that my own father would not talk about with me. Steve was just a very cool, unselfish, giving person like that; even at a time when he would have been well within his right to make life all about himself.
But Steve never made anything about himself. Over his law career spanning 25 years, he was known for offering sound, honest advice and advocacy, offering a smile and warm handshake to friend and stranger alike, and he was a fair and worthy competitor in business. And for the brief time we had together this year — a great business associate, too.
Steve Smarr will be missed in this community by his clients, friends, and past employees, and will not be forgotten too soon. His legacy will be that the type of genteel lawyer and businessman that he was is fast becoming a bygone small-town memory. Rest in peace, my friend!
Arrangements for Steve Smarr will be announced as we learn of them from the family.