We see John on a somewhat regular basis. He lost a leg just below the knee almost two years ago.
I usually find him in good spirits and the rally world is still one of his primary interests. The subject of another WRC event remains in our conversations and has become the focus for a new group, the Evergreen Rally Group. John is very instrumental in giving information from the "good old days," when we worked with him, as well as providing insight into some of the existing avenues today.
I will give him regards when we visit him this weekend.
PS. Every summer I go to WRC Finland organizers are still asking about John! They had great time running timing and course for John, trip sponsored by FINLANDIA Vodka!!, and would like to lend helping hand again is asked...
I stopped by to visit with John yesterday. I met his brother, Jim, and he told me of John's death. Jim commented that there were still family members who had not yet heard of John's passing.
Until all of those issues can be addressed, arrangements can not be made. Jim was not sure when an annoncement of services would be made. I will maintain my contact with Jim and as details become available, I will endeavor to post pertinent information.
For those of us who knew John, it will be a tragic loss. While not in the loftiest of accomodations, his focus remained on the world of rallying. We continued to evaluate the options regarding WRC potential here in the US and in particular, the Northwest. He was an inspiration, and we at the Evergreen Rally Group will miss him deeply.
...very sad news...he's larger than life figure in the US rallying
- I only have wonderful memories from all rallies organized by Johgn and his pro crew
- He always did something exciting to us rallyists, like Seattle Underground Tour, Rodeo Arena cowboy barbeque, lavist parties at Wyerhouse head quarters and so on. All free.
- I'll miss him
I just spoke with Claudia Chittim, who's in Illinois with one of her daughters. She said John passed quietly on Friday afternoon with a heart attack. As one of his Canadian friends, John will be sincerely missed by the Rallying community of North America and throughout the world. His love for Rallying, despite the problems with SCCA and all, will never be touched. We've lost a giant in our sport, as big and important as any Driver will ever be. After all, he Drove Rallyweek Northwest and the Toyota Olympus. Rest easy, old friend. You won't have to worry about dust again!:-(
In the early 70's I met John hanging out at the MORE Opel group. In those days a group of us drove our rally cars daily. I would occasionally see John on the other side of the freeway in his RX2/3 rally car, He would always wave and honk.
When I look back Rallyweek and Olympus always stand out. They were always fun well organised events. Not just the WRC's.
Thank you John for all you did for rallying in the NorthWest, and in the US. It was awesome to be competing in an FIA event along with people we had only read about (no interent or Speed channel in those days).
John always had another plan cooking, and he certainly made things happen.