BLACK EARTH (WKOW)-- People in the town of Black Earth are mourning the sudden death of a respected friend. Wednesday morning 44-year-old Dave Seymour died after his SUV was rear-ended and pushed in front of an oncoming semi.
Even though Seymour worked in Middleton for the American Girl Company and lived out in the country near Mount Horeb, friends say his heart and soul was fully invested his small community near Black Earth and Mazomanie. A place where people honored him as a role model
Those that knew him say Dave Seymour was many things during his life, a soldier, hard worker, father and friend, but above all else a mentor.
"It was all about the kids with Dave and whatever was in their best interest is how he approached his program," Pete Jopke explains. "He's going to be sorely missed."
For several years Seymour worked as a coach and coordinator in the Wisconsin Heights youth football program teaching hundreds of kids the fundamentals of the game. Close friend and varsity football coach Pete Jopke says Dave saw it as much more than that.
"It was kind of ironic because the last part of our conversation we talked about football being one of those sports that teaches life lessons. I think this is a lesson here, this tragedy, that's going to be pretty tough to get our hands around," Jopke says.
Whenever Seymour left the football field his mentoring skills went with him. They followed him to the very depths of his heart to New Heights Lutheran Church where he served as a board member and mentor to a handful of confirmation students. Seymour was expected to meet with his group the night he died.
"So Wednesday night we just scrapped our plans and had a prayer service with candles. It was a time for people to just cry and hug and be together. People just flocked to this place because they needed that. They were so traumatized," Pastor Rob Nelson says.
The trauma quickly spread throughout a community of only 1,300 people. Many community members knew Seymour as the fun-loving guy who always wore a smile, a man eager to help anyone who asked for it.
"You never walked away from a conversation with Dave without feeling uplifted in some way," Nelson says.
The crash Dave Seymour was involved in is still being investigated by the Dane County Sheriff's office. His funeral will be held Monday morning in Black Earth.
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