Greg Anthony ‘Racer’ Gosar, 81 July 15, 1937 – Jan. 11, 2019
MONTE VISTA— Greg Gosar recently crossed the finish line after completing his remarkable and legendary life.
Who he was is best expressed by his children – Kris, Chad and Quin.
My dad and I had a special relationship. As a father, he was a man that constantly set an example to always be honest, work hard, and remain impeccable in your word and actions. He could deliver compassionate and sensitive messages when needed, but he could be just as firm as well. Of all things, he was steady.
He taught me that education was the key to an open mind and could unlock the gifts within. He was not into gloating or grandstanding but stayed humble and thankful until the very end. He helped me to listen to my heart, absorb hurt and love; both will make you strong. He and my mom taught me how to love and roll with class as well as good taste. He felt that family was everything, and that it’s important to build on your roots.
Through time he became my best friend. He taught me what constitutes great music, what great friends are, and that going fast isn’t always about horsepower, while still showing me how to live on the edge and have fun. Of course, he showed me how to make wonderful sausage, tend a mesquite fire, and drink great scotch.
Greg Gosar, the original Renaissance man: boxer, concert violinist, model, men’s fine clothing expert, singer, writer, farmer, rancher, water rights activist, race car driver, welder, feeder of the homeless, joke teller, grill master, sausage maker, car collector, and most importantly patriarch of this great family.
“At the end of a work day, clean up the shop and put away your tools.” That lesson has served me well, Dad. Thank you, and I love you, and will miss you forever.
Sweet Daddy, I sent much of this to you on your 80th birthday, but it’s all still so fitting.
The lessons you’ve taught me by your great example are endless, and I am forever grateful.
Here are a few: You’ve taught me to give back to others and love deeply, while always standing up for what you believe in, including standing up for what is detrimental to our environment.
You’ve taught me that if you work hard and surround yourself and your family with good tunes, diverse friends, great food, interesting conversation, good values, and maybe a few fast German cars, life can never be that bad.
We will always adore the man, husband, father, father-in-law, and grandfather you have been! Thank you for all you are and all you’ve given us and for loving me even when I was “lost” and not so lovable. Today we celebrate you!
As I said, all those words are still so fitting. But now, I must write the end…which I always dreaded doing. You ended the final week of your life just as you lived: with pure class, strength, bravery, humbleness, and that look in your eyes that told us how loved we were by you. I feel it was an honor and a gift to be by your side and feel my hand in yours. While I hated to let you go, I’m so thankful you gave us the opportunity to love on you a few more times. I will forever love and cherish you.
Before coming to the San Luis Valley, Greg lived and farmed in Tolleson, Ariz. There he fulfilled a dream to road race in open-wheeled Formula cars. He did it with talent and success. He was nationally recognized by The Sports Car Club of America for his many wins. He also became a member of the National Guard and was very proud of his military service.
In 1971, he moved to the San Luis Valley and put down deep roots. He established an organic alfalfa and wheat farm long before organic became mainstream. He was one of the first to practice minimum tillage and always honored the health of his patch of earth on this beautiful planet. He developed an impressive herd of Blonde D’Aquitaine cattle and created a flour mill to stone grind his wheat. It was the birth of Mountain Mama Milling, which has been making families healthy for 45 years and still humming along.
When the Sunshine Festival was beginning, food was needed. Greg decided to follow in his father’s footsteps and developed Gosar Sausage. Many can remember standing in the long lines to enjoy his creation. Gosar Sausage continues to provide the finest European style sausage to fine restaurants, festivals, and backyard barbeques.
When not doing all of this, he raced his beloved ’73 RS Porsche Carrera and acquired numerous trophies, thrilling all fans of the Porsche Club of America.
He also was a consummate violinist, playing with the Utah Symphony when he was 12 years old. He played with the Pastoral String Quartet until health issues robbed him of the ability to play.
He was movie star handsome.
Greg will always be remembered as a champion for the environment. He and Chris Canaly organized the fight against American Water Development, Inc. They, along with a mighty force of San Luis Valley citizens, drove the water robbers and their dirty money out with their tails between their legs.
He was a devoted 30-year member of the Early Iron Car Club and loved his association with the rodders.
He will be sadly missed by his family, longtime wife and friend of 60 years, Suzanne;
children – Kris (Jill) Gosar, Chad (Dory) Gosar, Quin (Kim) Greaves; eight perfect grandchildren – Cooper, Otto and Klayton (San Luis Valley); Chase, Bryce and Lily (Phoenix, Ariz.); Maguire and Jack Greaves (Westlake, Texas), as well as sister, Jan (Roberto) Martini (Florence, Italy); best friend, Gene (Kandi) Davis (Sheraton, Wyo.) and Greg’s beloved dog, Kiva.
Greg donated his body to the University of Arizona Medical School. A gathering will be held in the summer to honor this remarkable man.
In his memory, we ask that you all get on board and fight the group that is currently coming after the precious water of the San Luis Valley. Man and woman-up, and tell them, as Greg would say, “Get the hell out!”
The family has requested no flowers or gifts. If you wish, please donate to the San Luis Valley Ecosystem Council in his name. www.SLVec.org
“Do not go where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.”
-Ralph Waldo Emerson