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HomeNL-2013-02 Tribute to Joe

A Tribute to Joe Coker
Dave Kitson

  Joe Coker
2012 was a great year for the Houston Canoe Club with members paddling 2,400 sanctioned miles on 29 trips. The monthly meetings were interesting and well attended and by all accounts there was a great Christmas party. It might not have been that way. As the year began Ken McDowell was the Commodore, however, his job (or something about Ipanema Beach) required him to spend more and more time in Brazil. He was almost never in town. Without a leader, the Club could easily have been adrift without a paddle (all right, someone had to make that pun) but Joe Coker stepped in from his job as Vice Commodore and began doing both jobs.
To give some idea how much work was involved, he organized and chaired the Board meetings, organized and ran the monthly meetings, recruited folks for the programs, researched and wrote two very interesting programs himself on lightning and ‘gators, lead at least 5 trips (more than anyone else), paddled more than 200 sanctioned miles (also more than anyone else), loaded many trip photo files onto the website for us all to enjoy (also more than anyone else) and performed much more work for the Club that is not as easy to list. Ken McDowell, John Rich, Honey Leveen, Harmon Everett, Greg Walker, John Bartos, Tim Garber and John Berlinghoff, all did a great job as well, but as Commodore, Joe had involvement and spent time with each of them.

By itself, this was a huge contribution to the Club, however, with three months to go,Tim Garber resigned as Fleet Captain so Joe assumed that job as well adding responsibility for logging and posting the trips to all the other work he was already doing.

Even with all the extra work I never heard a word of complaint or frustration; he just did what needed to be done to benefit the Club, always with a smile.

I would like to thank all the board members for all the hard work that made last year a great year, but especially Joe for doing the work of three folks.

 The author,
Dave Kitson