Our 27 year friendship started August, 1994 when we met at a climbing class. Dan was new to Alaska, Joann and kids were still in New Jersey. We hit it off having discovered kindred spirits in each other. Dan had a wry sense of humor, a deep humility, and an incredible memory. And he was a far better skier than I as was amply demonstrated by a day at Alyeska ina 36 inch heavy, wet snow. He excelled; I spent most of the day picking myself out from the snow. Fortunately for me our day was cut short by an avalanche--no injuries--and I was accorded an acceptable reason to go home early. And still in one piece...
Now, climbing? We were equal, though our indoor climbing efforts came to an end the night we pulled the fire system plumbing off the ceiling at Anchorage Gymnastics, prompting a response from AFD. The two of us were declared persona non grata at the gym.
And the deep philosophical discussions at our monthly "old man" breakfast at Southside Grill--his favorite diner. Even in the throes of his illness he ate like there was no tomorrow.
All in all, my life was better for Dan's presence. I will miss you, my friend.