Saturday, August 29, 2009

The Lion of Leinenkugel

It's not satire. It's IowaHawk!
La Crosse WI -- Slowly filing past a green-and-gold casket festooned with cheese curds, lottery tickets, and bouquets of 6-pack rings, the city of La Crosse bid a tearful farewell this morning to Norman V. "Norm" Snitker, 62. Long heralded as the "Lion of Leinenkugel" for his relentless fight for free beer and shots at local taverns and supper clubs, Snitker succumbed to an exploding liver Tuesday evening during a late model modified heat at La Crosse Speedway's $1 Jagermeister night.

"Norm left an amazing legacy, and an amazing bar tab," said mourner Les Schreindl, 59. "La Crosse won't see his likes again soon."[...]

At the packed memorial service, Pastor Ed Vos urged mourners to remember the full measure of their fallen friend.

"Whatever his endless shortcomings were as a human being, we cannot let a few DUIs, cheese entombments and arson episodes overshadow the many good things that Norm thought he did," said Vos. "Let us all recognize that Norm stood up for what he thought was right. No matter whether it was really right or not, and no matter how blotto he was. I suppose we all have to respect a man who can maintain that kind of fierce moral clarity. And can hold his liquor like that."

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