gmhTODAY 16 gmhToday Sept Oct 2017 - Page 44

Scot Smithee, Gilroy’s New Chief of Police Superheroes are fictional, but real heroes do exit Written By Kimberly Ewertz In 2004, Smithee and his wife Brenda were vacationing in Hawaii. On a return trip to Maui their catamaran overturned. Seven people including his wife were trapped beneath the capsized boat. Smithee’s quick thinking and selflessness resulted in the successful rescue of every passenger. “I think being in this business long enough you learn if you get in panic mode or you start being reactionary that you just lost the advantage,” Smithee said. ”You’ve got to stay calm.” For his heroic efforts, Smithee was presented with the U.S. Coast Guard’s highest lifesaving medal, the Gold Lifesaving Award. “I tend to think about other people before myself, that is just a part of who I am,” he said. According to his wife of 16 years that isn’t his only outstanding trait. “I think that the way he treats people is very positive and it tends to be returned the same way. There’s a mutual respect. He’s also brilliant. He’s one of those people that is really good at everything, except that he’s terrible at roller skating, and he cannot sing,” Brenda said. A native Californian, Smithee was born and raised in Redwood City. He moved with his parents to Gilroy in 1983. He began his career with the Gilroy Police Department as a reserve police officer, a volunteer who assists regular officers. Former Gilroy Police Chief, Gregg Giusiana, has been the single biggest influence in Smithee’s career. Guisiana PHOTO PROVIDED BY SCOT SMITHEE. 44 GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2017 gmhtoday.com Scot Smithee, Gilroy’s New Chief of Police Superheroes are fictional, but real heroes do exit Written By Kimberly Ewertz 44 GILROY • MORGAN HILL • SAN MARTIN SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2017 gmhtoday.com I n 2004, Smithee and his wife Brenda were vacationing in Hawaii. On a return trip to Maui their catamaran overturned. Seven people including his wife were trapped beneath the capsized boat. Smithee’s quick thinking and selflessness resulted in the successful rescue of every passenger. “I think being in this business long enough you learn if you get in panic mode or you start being reactionary that you just lost the advantage,” Smithee said. ”You’ve got to stay calm.” For his heroic efforts, Smithee was presented with the U.S. Coast Guard’s highest lifesaving medal, the Gold Lifesaving Award. “I tend to think about other people before myself, that is just a part of who I am,” he said. According to his wife of 16 years that isn’t his only outstanding trait. “I think that the way he treats people is very positive and it tends to be returned the same way. There’s a mutual respe 7B^( 06'&ƖB^( 2RbF6RVPFB2&VǒvBBWfW'FrW6W@FB^( 2FW'&&RB&W"6FrBP6B6r( '&VF6BFfR6Ɩf&6֗FVRv0&&B&6VB&VGvB6GPfVBvF2&VG2Fv&2R&Vv26&VW"vFFPv&Ɩ6RFW'FVB2&W6W'fPƖ6Rff6W"fVFVW"v767G0&VwV"ff6W'2f&W"v&Ɩ6R6Vbw&VvpvW62&VVFR6vR&vvW7@fVV6R6֗FV^( 26&VW"wV6