Thursday, August 05, 2021

Life lessons from the Ice Cream Man

| October 16, 2020 1:00 AM

If you wanted to take the heart out of Coeur d'Alene, you could start by transferring Scott DuCoeur to a Spokane school district.

But banish that thought.

Over the years, DuCoeur has distinguished himself as a Coeur d'Alene teacher — one of the very finest, gracing the halls of Sorensen Magnet School of the Arts and Humanities. Who knew his talents translated to the frigid side of summertime delight, when school is out? Scott DuCoeur is also the Ice Cream Man.

This revelation was served up sumptuously in a My Turn column by DuCoeur published last Saturday. In it, the teacher expressed gratitude not for the bank account benefits reaped from his 1977 postal Jeep, but for the relationships he developed and experiences he relished making his rounds in downtown Coeur d'Alene neighborhoods over the summer.

Here's just one sweet treat from his column about the love affair he has with his summertime job:

"I love talking to the tourists and selfishly getting a lot of satisfaction knowing they have to head back to their hometowns while I get to stay in the place where they vacation. I love getting home and telling my wife about the stories from the day and all the great people I had the opportunity to chat with."

In case you missed it, here's the little freezer full of goodies:

Read that and you'll understand part of the reason we respect and admire Scott DuCoeur. The kindness and gratitude he so graciously expresses are genuine, as those who have known Scott for years will attest.

What has gone unsaid, however, is that our community is blessed with many people like him. Maybe not all so skilled professionally, and maybe not so motivated as to operate a small business when others among us would be more tempted to hang out under a shade tree with our feet up and eyes closed.

Coeur d'Alene and the duCoeur family — his wife, Moira, teaches third grade at Sorensen — are inseparable, thank goodness. They represent the best of a wonderful place to live, but they're far from alone.

This is just a gentle reminder that no matter how mean and nasty things swirling around us seem to get, at our roots this community is strong, solid and supportive. There's chocolate smeared sweetly on many of our mugs and a little bit of the Ice Cream Man in many of our hearts. Let's please keep it that way.