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George Vance Fisher

George Vance Fisher, age 81, of Hilliard, Ohio, passed away   June 19  at the Kobacker Hospice House after a courageous battle with cancer. Born November 26, 1926, he was preceded in death by father Raymond Fisher, mother Francis Fisher and brother Raymond Fisher.  

He practiced private law for 54 years and was a partner with David Skrobot for over 30 years, currently in Fisher, Skrobot and Sheraw, LLC. He was a member of the Columbus and Ohio State Bar Associations.

He graduated from Castle Heights Military Academy in 1944 where he was captain of the swimming team and held records that remained unbroken for 28 years.

He was a graduate of Ohio State University in 1950 and Ohio State University Law School in 1952.

He served in the U.S. Navy during World War II.

He was a past Commodore and member of Buckeye Lake Yacht Club, member of  Hoover Yacht Club, past President and life member of the International Lightning Class and past Vice President of the Interlake Sailing Class.  A champion sailboat racer, George had won 19 North American Championships in the Interlake and Lightning Classes since 1977. Not only a champion competitor, he was an enthusiastic ambassador for the sport, imparting his knowledge in coaching both children and adults at many levels. George was awarded the US Sailing Sportsmanship award in 2002 and thereafter chaired the Sportsmanship Committee and was a past Chairman of the One Design Class Council for US Sailing.

An avid skier, he traveled out west on numerous trips with his children and grandchildren.  

George was on the board of directors of the Mt Aloysius facility for children and a director of the Mt Aloysius Foundation.  He was a member of the Serra Club, a past member of the parish council and current member of the St Brendan Catholic Church, and a past president of the St. Vincent De Paul Society. He was a dedicated server at the St. Patrick Cathedral in Columbus for 35 years.

He is survived by his wife of 55 years Martha, sons Greg(Jo Ann) Fisher, Annapolis, Md., and Matt (Lisa) Fisher, Columbus, OH. daughter Gayle (Tom) Mulvey, Granville, Oh. and grandchildren, Martha, Kurt, Bessie, and Addyson Fisher,  Amanda and Stuart Fisher, Kara, Gwen, and  Ian Mulvey.

Calling hours will be 2-4 pm and 6:00-8:00 pm Sunday June 22 at Schoedinger Funeral Home 1740 Zollinger Rd. Columbus, Ohio 43221 (614) 457 5481.  

A funeral mass will be held  Monday June 23 at 10am at the St. Brendan Church  4475 Dublin Rd, Hilliard, OH 43026.(614) 876-1272, followed by a celebration of George’s life at 1:00pm  June 23 at Leatherlips Yacht Club, 9230 Shawnee Trail, Powell, Ohio, 43065.  

In lieu of Flowers, George requested donations be made to the Kobacker House c/o OhioHealth Foundation 180 E. Broad St. Columbus, Ohio, 43215 or St. Brendan Church.

* From Terry Hutchinson: I was saddened to hear the news of George Fisher's passing (in Issue 2622). As a past member of the Lightning class, I have great memories of racing against George and all the Fishers for that matter. George was a great competitor and one thing that always struck me is that regardless of the situation he always seemed to be smiling as if to say how good is this? Probably a lesson somewhere for all of us...

I know that there is a fraternity of sailor's worldwide that are saddened but in the same breath fortunate to have had the chance to know and compete with George.

* From Rick Bernstein: As humble a man as you ever met, George Fisher embodied the persona we should all strive for. Having the incredible experience of crewing for George and Greg in the 2003 Lightning World Championships, I witnessed humility rarely seen in this age of thankless so-called "champions." Racing in his mid 70s, racing in an extremely tough US Worlds, going into the last day or racing, George was winning the Worlds. In the early years of George's racing, there were no throw-outs; he would be World Champion. In reality though it is secondary that he ended up 6th, his highest finish ever.

The night before racing ended, George seemed almost uncomfortable, sort of shy and modest at the evening's party as countless wanted to shake his hand, discuss how he does it, ask where he gets the drive, and on and on people kept approaching him. It was an evening I'll never forget standing back and watching George shake off the attention, while really seeing the priceless glow of excitement in his eyes; he was, uncomfortably, on Cloud Nine. The next time you just don't have the energy, when you're feeling down or tired, can't go sailing with your family because you've been racing, remember 81year young George Fisher; I know I will.

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