ABOUT SMILER >> General information >> In Memory of Rita Belcher

RitaIt was with great sadness that I heard of the death of my good friend Rita Belcher. I first met Rita in 1995 whilst on a trip to New York. She was one of several American fans of Rod that I had arranged to meet up with and for a couple of days and nights we went sight-seeing, eating and drinking together. Rita was great company, friendly, intelligent, plucky and gracious, with a lovely sense of humour.

Around a year later when Smiler needed a new North American Secretary, it was to Rita we went. She was well aware of the responsibility she was taking on but took to the post like a duck to water. In no time she had increased the number of North American members and conscientiously ensured the club was run efficiently.

But Rita was more than just Smiler's American Secretary. She was a personal friend to countless fans the World over - including me. She would go out of her way to help fans get the best tickets for shows or personally signed photographs of Rod. And she genuinely cared about the welfare of all Rod's fans.

Her loss at just 58 years old teaches us all that life is short - too short - and that we should enjoy and appreciate everything we have while we are here.

Rita will be greatly missed by all who she touched. Like all who knew her, my thoughts and condolances are with her family.

John Gray, SMILER founder

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