Sydney M. Kass, 92 1/2 of Stockton, Calif., retired and ended his over half-century of service and devotion to the Delta (Stockton, Calif.) Coin Club, Jan. 11 during the club’s annual dinner held at UJ’s restaurant.
Over 50 members and guests attended the annual gathering, which was emceed by Michael S. Turrini, current California State Numismatic Association president.
Along with other presentations and the installation of the Club’s 2013 executive officers, the main highlights of the evening were the accolades and acclaim bestowed upon Kass, who concluded 30-plus years as the club’s corresponding secretary and editor.
The club also recognized him for five decades of service and devotion to the club as president, treasurer, meeting facility coordinator, membership coordinator, property custodian, bingo caller and much more.
Kass was presented with an engraved walnut plaque and the honorary title of Mr. Delta Coin Club.
In addition, the American Numismatic Association noted his service and devotion, as a nationally known error coin advocate and involvements in California organized numismatics, with greetings from current ANA President Thomas G. Hallenbeck and new Executive Director Jeff Shevlin. Hallenbeck added a framed Presidential Certificate of Appreciation. The Northern California Numismatic Association (NCNA) President Fred G. van den Haak, via First Vice President Jon-Maria Marish, bestowed a President’s Medal. Kass also received the newly established NCNA’s Donnell Award, which is specific to northern California local coin clubs.
Hallenbeck noted in his greetings that Kass “and others like you are the key to the continued success of numismatics.”
Shevlin spoke of Kass’s service and devotion and noted that “he makes the finest chili around!”
Lee H. Gong of Santa Rosa, Calif., shared his reminiscences about Syd, having been in correspondence with him back in 1969. He identified Kass as “one of my main mentors.”
Nationally recognized error coin specialist and dealer Fred Weinberg, of Encino, Calif., was unable to attend due to the Florida United Numismatists (FUN) convention. But he sent a message about how Kass’s devotion to numismatics as the primary influence in turning Weinberg’s hobby into a lifetime profession.
Weinberg added that Kass “has influenced so many of us, including, I’m sure many of you here tonight.”
“I wish I could be here tonight to honor you and thank you in person,” Weinberg said. “What a generous man, and numismatics has been so lucky to have him as an ‘ambassador.’”
Kass, who was accompanied by his wife Mary, moved by the accolades and acclaim, and joked that “it is going to take a van to haul everything.”
While Syd’s honors were the main event for the club’s annual dinner, three other members, in respect for their service, were elevated to Honorary Life Members. They were Cliff Rice, retiring president; Theodore Garber, current vice president; and Luella Griep, who concluded 10 years as the recording secretary. The club’s highest award, the Enzminger Award, went to Rice.
The Club’s 2013 new executive officers were installed by Turrini. They are Ed Hohe, president; John Lopez, vice president; Joyce Korock, recording secretary; Theodore Garber, corresponding secretary, and Tony Rantz, treasurer.
The dinner was organized by Loris Enzminger, events coordinator, who has served 29 years as the club’s treasurer, and Turrini. Lloyd G. Chan was the photographer.
For information about northern California organizations, write to P.O. Box 4104, Vallejo, CA, 94590-0410, or email EMPERORI@juno.com.