I knew Moore worked at Universal Studios in California and had a musical background, and since he was the assistant editor of the newspaper, I asked him if he could sing.
“I can do two or three,” he told me.
“Songs?” I asked.
“No sets,” he said.
He brought several CDs, told the disc jockey which songs to play, and then the fun began. I introduced Moore to the chilly crowd, handed him the mic, and suddenly Moore turned Smith Park into a Vegas lounge act.
It was like Kippy stepping out of a phone booth and becoming a singing Superman.
His voice has changed. His mannerism has changed. He was a different man, this William “Kippy” Moore.
The music stopped on April 2 when Moore, a 1981 Middletown High School graduate, died of colon cancer. He was 58 years old.
His death left us all in shock. He can’t be dead, we keep repeating ourselves. He was so full of life.
How could a person who constantly smiled make us cry? We just wanted one more minute with Moore, one more song.
The outpouring of love from the community of Middletown and beyond since his death has been overwhelming. I’m still waiting for someone to say something, anything, negative about this guy. These words will never be spoken.
If you needed to feel better about yourself, Moore was your man.
In addition to working at the Middletown Journal, Moore served as program director at the Middletown Senior Citizens Center, Cincinnati State Student Services and program director at the Dayton Salvation Army Kroc Center.
Moore represented the Second Ward on the Middletown City Council, but resigned after completing two years of his four-year term.
His fingerprints are all over the arts community in Middletown and Dayton.
His visit is scheduled for 10 a.m. to noon Tuesday at the Sorg Opera House, 63 S. Main St., Middletown. Two hours will not be enough.
A few years ago I covered the Memorial Day Parade in Middletown. Parade organizer Jeri Lewis said Moore never shied away from singing after the parade at Woodside Cemetery.
“He just knew what God had given him,” she said. “He knew his calling, his purpose. He was so humble about it.
I hadn’t seen Moore for a few years when we saw each other at the park.
“Come here,” he told me.
Then he gave me a big bear hug.
I lost two great men to colon cancer. My father, only 56, died in 1984, along with William “Kippy” Moore. With my family history of colon cancer, I have routine colonoscopies as directed by my family doctor. I started when I was 40. It was 21 years ago.
Everyone will tell you, the worst part of a colonoscopy is the preparation. And the worst part of losing someone to colon cancer is not being ready to say goodbye.
View a photo gallery of Kip Moore’s life in our community. journal-news.com