|Trey Apel's Eulogy
written by Trey, Peter and Brian
Thank you so much for coming. There are a lot of people here that I did not expect to see and I am incredibly
touched to see you all here today. Your presence here speaks to my father’s character more than anything. Look
around at the people here today. Look at the diversity. No one could bring together people like Win did. In many
respects it was his passion to bring people together. And this is his ultimate gathering. In case you’re wondering
he organized this too, and according to the outline he left us, I have 3-5 min, so I’d better get going!
For those of you who do not know me I am Win Apel’s oldest son Trey---actually Edwin Victor Apel III. As the
oldest son and bearer of his name it is my honor to be up here to talk about my father today. I think that perhaps
the best way to see how my father impacted this world is look at the people around him. In our family of five we
hold 11 degrees---that’s 2.2 degrees per person--including 2 Ph.D.s, an M.D. and a law degree. To say that we are
overeducated is perhaps an understatement.
However, this is a reflection of how much my father valued knowledge. The thirst for knowledge was his way of
satisfying his curiosity. He never stopped learning. And he always encouraged us to seek the answers to our
curiosities about the world and pursue education. Maybe that’s why we kept going to school long after the college
fund ran out. As a result growing up, it seemed that we couldn’t ever finish dinner without a dictionary or someone
running to the library to get an encyclopedia. Sometimes this was used against us. One night at dinner, Dad said to
us: Which one of you boys knows the most about bridges? [Tell story]
We grew up without a television and if we ever let it be known to our father that we were bored out came the math
problems. He would often fill a legal pad with addition, subtraction, multiplication and division problems and require
us to complete them. Needless to say, we tried hard to hide our boredom from him. My father also taught us to
wrestle and play chess. However, he never let us win, although in retrospect with a name like Win Victor I suppose
that should not surprise me. But he taught us to learn from our losses and always be better at something than the
It was because of this curiosity and thirst for knowledge that he was quite understandably a bit of a technophile. He
was one of the first people to have a cell phone, laptop, and smart phone. And he became an expert user of all of
them. Especially the Palm TREO…man he loved that thing… He never minded hanging his “nerd” out there.
In 1985 he triumphantly brought home a Commodore Amiga. He was so impressed with the technology and knew
that “personal computers” were going to be a household item. In his opinion the Amiga was the best. It had a 16-
color graphic user interface, stereo sound, 10mHz processer and 1.5MB RAM! This was in the pre-Internet days,
and even before dial-up bulletin boards. However, as the consummate student he needed to continue to learn
about this computer and share what he had already learned with others. So he started the Amiga Users of
Southwest Idaho group. It was a meeting of Amiga owners that met at the Kopper Kitchen in Boise, Idaho near the
airport. Every month they would get together and talk about new gadgets, software, and computing problems. Win
didn’t always lead the group discussions—sometimes he said very little. His role was as the organizer, facilitator and
One of my fondest memories of my dad and this user group revolves around the newsletter that he published—
well, in my memory that he and my brothers published. My dad bought desktop publishing software called
PageMaker and every month he would put together the regular newsletter--teaching us how to do it of course. As a
former printer he got quite a kick out being able to build the newsletter digitally, without the mess…. He would
gather the articles throughout the month—again, written by others, he was the facilitator. Once a month our dot-
matrix printer wound grind out a master copy and he and my brothers would head to his law office to make copies.
As just the boys, we would often be allowed to drink as much soda as we could so long as each of us did his job.
One of us would put paper in the copier, one would fold, and the other would run the newsletters through the
postage machine. All the while my dad would keep meticulous track of the all the supplies we used making sure that
the firm got reimbursed for the expenses. Afterward, we’d drop off boxes and boxes of newsletters off at the post
office, get ice cream and head home.
Throughout these and other gatherings Win always put the human connection first. Win had a passion for uniting
like-minded individuals and for forming and fostering human relationships. One of Win’s legacies will be the ‘Win
Apel NYC Dinners’. Win liked to bring people together. One of the ways that he would do this is get a reservation in
New York City, often at the Brazilian restaurant with the round tables—and he would invite ten people that he
knew, but who didn’t know each other. They were often leaders in Construction, Insurance or Risk Management.
They would come, socialize, network and build relationships.
This meeting here today is his ultimate gathering. And as such it would be a disservice to not share with you what
Win valued as his most important personal relationship: His passion for Christ. Make no mistake, my father’s
greatest relationship, his most important connection was that with Jesus.
It is for this reason that he didn’t fear death. He confided in me in the last year that it was harder for him to leave
Weeks Marine than it was to contemplate his own death. He told me that he had the easy task. All he had to do
was die, and he would rest in the eternal comfort of Christ in heaven. My father is in a better place--a place free of
disease and pain.
We are not here today to mourn my father. He lived a life fuller than most with no regrets and now he is better
cared for than he ever was on this earth. We are here today to celebrate his life. Like my cousin Sheila said “I can't
really say that Win "lost" his battle with brain cancer. Last night he won that final victory over death.”
As I look back over Win’s life and the legacy he left behind, I’m tearful but proud. Proud of his integrity, his work
ethic, his leadership, his passion for his family and his deep faith. I find it odd that some people look in the mirror
and say with regret “I am becoming just like my father.” For me, I can think of no greater honor.