Question of the Week
We are all poorer for the loss of Dave Helming. The dog fancy will never be the same!
Love to Peggy and family and all of us who knew and loved him!
Coram, New York
David Helming — the consummate gentleman.
Joy S. Brewster
A tremendous loss to the dog community. Dave was always a gentleman. As I knew him, he never shirked from the work or duty at hand. A great leader and truly cared for his dogs. Never minded being covered in dog hair or dirt. An inspiring sportsman, win or lose. An outstanding representative of what we all should be striving for in the dog world.
I will forever remember Dave Helming as the collective "Calm Blue Ocean" for our entire sport.
I met Mr. and Mrs. Helming as a teenager growing up at dog shows — he was a father figure to so many of us.
I did not see him often, but when I came to the U.S. for the Westchester KC weekend or Philadelphia, Morris & Essex and especially Westminster Kennel Club, he was always a quiet presence, keeping the virtual train on its tracks. I looked forward to our chats and a hug when I saw him. He always greeted me with a big smile and always sent me on my way telling me to enjoy the event and to behave myself.
I have kept his invitations to judge at Westminster, and his private emails and our conversations where he shared that he was proud of me are some of my most treasured mementos. He was truly the actual crown itself of our sport, and the jewels in that crown were the cherished kennel clubs he ran. We have lost far too many greats in recent times, and this is such a devastating loss for all.
I will remember him with great respect and affection for the rest of my days.
Lynn Pray and Courtney Cherico Ross
Dave was the kindest, nicest man we knew in the dog world (and beyond).
When my daughter Courtney was a Junior handler, Michelle and Mike Scott needed an assistant for a big set of dog shows in upstate New York. We live in Massachusetts, and I couldn’t take time off work to drive my daughter to meet them in the middle of the week.
Dave volunteered to meet her at the train station in New York and promised to deliver her safely to the Scotts if I put her on the train in Providence.
I would never have allowed anyone else in dogs to do this — but Dave was the one person I could trust to take excellent care of my daughter and make sure that she was safe at the shows until I arrived over the weekend. He was a man of his word, and he always remembered her and greeted her every time we saw him at dog shows since!
He will be sorely missed.
Monroe, New York
David was one of the greatest persons I ever knew in the sport. Besides being a great breeder, he ran the mechanics of so many of our top shows. It will take several people to replace him.
I’m going to miss our Red Sox chats, which were either full of frustration or filled with excitement.
Rest well, Dave.
I have been privileged to work with the Westminster press organization for 12 or so years. It's a lot of hard work and long hours. I am usually at the show site between 5:30 and 6 a.m. When Dave came on board as show chair and director of operations, invariably he was either already there or arrived shortly thereafter. There wasn't one detail that escaped his attention. Despite that, he always had time for a quick hello and a brief smile. His serious demeanor belied a man who was the best of sportsmen, gracious and kind. I always admired his devotion to the many dog clubs he served. He and Peggy have been a formidable support to the sport we love. His shoes will never be filled again. He truly was one of a kind, and I am blessed to have known and worked with him.
Sandy Hook, Connecticut
I have known Dave since the ’70s. He was one of the nicest men I ever met! He was always ready to help with a show problem. One of my fondest memories was after finishing pictures of group placements at the Garden, he walked across the floor and grabbed my arm and walked me across the huge floor back to my seat! It made me feel wonderful! I loved Dave Helming!
Center Cross, Virginia
I had the pleasure of meeting Dave on numerous occasions. He was a quiet storm filled with passion, honor, integrity and grace.
Clayton, North Carolina
Dave Helming was a pillar of the Morris & Essex Kennel Club and Westminster Kennel Club as well as the premier breeder of Newfoundlands. Always cheerful and friendly regardless of the situation.
Wesley Chapel, Florida
Dave was polite and a gentleman. Before my judging at Westminster, we were both attending a dog show. He took the time to search me out, introduce himself and indicate he looked forward to having me on the panel. It was very hospitable and professional.
Of course, the show was iconic and well run. I understood it had a lot to do with his leadership and participation.
My condolences to his wife and family. We have lost a gem.