On Tuesday night, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals judge and Thatcher, ID native Hon. Randy Smith was inducted into Idaho’s Hall of Fame.
Gov. C.L. “butch” Otter, Smith’s long-time friend from their days at Simplot, was there to present the honor that many notable people have received, including Joe Albertson, Philo T. Farnsworth and Sacajawea.
Hall of Fame board member Mary Hartung said she nominated Smith because he’s one of only seven people in the last 100 years to be nominated to that court. But Smith wasn’t the only rural farm boy to make it to the Pocatello Country Club.
In fact, when the world-famous judge was being honored at the country club, his childhood friend can be playing golf at the same time.
That friend might not have been a part of the procession of handshakes and hugs, instead, George Millward is grabbing a beer with his buddies in the room next door.
“It’s a tough circuit, and the decisions he’s made, he’s been very fair, and I’m a Democrat,” Millward said.
Millward was a railroad lobbyist for 20 years, and said Smith was always fair with him, even as a Republican. Smith must have kept that small town attitude. The graduate of Grace High School said he never imagined being honored in a room packed with people.
“When I was a kid, I was worried about how good a farmer I’d be and whether I’d have enough money to have a farm,” Smith said.
Hartung said he’s been modest about the honor the entire time.
“So when I talked to him about it, he said, ‘You’ve got to be kidding, me?'” Hartung said.
Maybe it was the contrast against the man he grew up with, but getting that award, Smith seemed like just another kid from small town Idaho.
“I don’t know whether or not I have a legacy, I think other people will have to say whether I have a legacy or not,” he said.
Another notable Pocatellan in Idaho’s hall of fame is Don Aslett.