It was not really a surprise July 25, when John Shaw’s daughter Nina, phoned to say her father had passed away. We members of Linda Lea’s Koffee Klatch had long known that John had a cancer that would take his life but we had underestimated his will  and strength to carry on! Many days when he did not show up, we would assume or fear that his time had come, only to have him show up again, sometimes looking well, but usually looking weaker and paler.

    John Shaw was I believe, the first member to join the club started by United Church Minister Don Proctor at the corner coffee shop. As I recall “Tiff” was next as number three, and I was fourth. I will never forget Proctor’s invitation. He said, “You’re intelligent. Why don’t you join us?” This I believe, was eight years ago.

    Shaw was the “brainiest” of the lot, in my opinion. As an inveterate reader, his knowledge of the world, its ways and its history was phenomenal. “Let’s ask John,” was always a staple response. And if (rarely) he lacked the wnaser, he would have it at the next session. His personal library was vast, and he was very generous in lending it’s contents. I can truthfully say that I have never known another person who so fulfilled my education.

    When I began writing for the SUN, my first story was about our coffee club, including separate paragraphs about each of the then members. It was no coincidence that I chose John Shaw as number one on my list-an easy choice!

    An unforgettable thrill came when a later story on Hack Canyon brought a comment from John Shaw. “Good story,” he said. I’ll add here that John became, “he who’s knowledge, wisdom-and to add later courage- that I so admired.” His knowledge and wisdom were shown frequently.

As for his courage, I remember when a heart problem caused him to black out while driving and he ran into a tree. Not long after that he drove alone (I believe to Phoenix), for surgery for some six bypasses. When I next saw him entering the coffee shop, I was astounded. Unfortunately, his cancer problem lay ahead. On his continued visits to the coffee shop (later renamed the Koffee Klatch) it was obvious that things weren’t good. But on rare occasions he looked almost healthy, but more and more often he was pale and didn’t stay long-but he still came.

John Shaw, you will be missed by “our bunch,’ but you will never be forgotten!

A coffee get together will be held at Laid-Back Larry’s on Thursday, July 30, from 9:00-11:00 a.m.