Pepi showed me the Vallée Blanche, I showed him football | VailDaily.com

Pepi showed me the Vallée Blanche, I showed him football

Pepi Gramshammer is a special person. My husband, John Ferguson, and I met him in the ’60s when Vail was brand new. Pepi needed legal help to start his hotel project. Actually, he still did not speak an abundance of English. A client relationship quickly climbed into a special one. The whole Gramshammer family turned into a second family for us and they still are. I’m honored to be young Sheika’s godmother.

Skiing was a big part of Pepi’s life as everyone knows, but he was also a giving person and Vail benefitted greatly from his generous contributions. He was a very friendly person, easy to know, and a great asset to have here in Vail. Both he and Sheika gave a great deal to the charities in Vail and were part of the reason many people came to Vail, one being the Crystal Ball, which the Gramshammers funded.

Pepi took on the project of the Gasthof and always worked very hard, as did many of his staff. They took pride in being part of a well-known establishment. His knowledge among the ski world helped to bring worldwide events to Vail and also special people, such as President Ford.

Pepi also had a hidden talent many people don’t know about. He was a very good landscape artist, and several of his paintings are hanging in the lodge.

We were close friends and shared a lot of time together including playing tennis, teaching him the game of golf, and taking him to his first football game. Most of all he was our dearest friend, and in the many years I’ve been alone, if I had needed something, he was there for me without hesitation.

Pepi is responsible for a special skiing movement I will never forget. We skied the Vallée Blanche together and Mont Blanc in Chamonix — a beautiful day on a fabulous glacier with Pepi. Incredible!

Thank you Pepi for being a part of our lives. Love you.

Widge Ferguson