An interesting turn of events has brought me here for the first time.
I was attempting to write a recollection of my ascent of the East Pillar Direct on Mt. Slesse with Greg Child in 93 and of course had to start by acknowledging John Stoddard and Dennis Mullen's visionary and bold first ascent of the East Face proper of Mt. Slesse in 77, hammerless and no cams?
Then in thinking of John, I remembered our adventures together back then and was once again saddened to to think of his untimely passing.
I decided to look John up on line and found this thread and the remembrances of so many including most recently Dennis Mullen.
I met John in Squamish on one of my first weekends there in spring of 76 and he'd just bailed off the Grand from the start of The Flats and the fact that he was even up there blew my newbie mind.
John was the Seattle ambassador to our gang of misfits and we shared a lot of shenanigans on and off the rock with a shared love of climbing, weed and Zappa. He was engaging, smart, fun, sensitive and caring.
John's enthusiasm and support was critical to my success in solving the Misled bolt ladder (in Vasque Ascenders) and then freeing the 2nd pitch of The Phew which opened up my eyes to Cruel Shoes.
John was a dear soul and I will treasure his memory and miss him for as long as I live; maybe some day when things are better there's a gathering for him somewhere?
My condolences to his family and those closest to him.