Sunday, April 12

NOT what I wanted to post about today...

The stories of Costa Rica and the Jungle will have to wait. Maybe even wait long enough to become legands...

Early Saturday morning, we lost a great friend. Thom Blaine, leader/manager/racer/deal maker for Team Jose Ole passed away in a horrible accident.

Thom is talking to Bev from Rim Nordic behind Eli...


If you race in Southern California, you have seen Thom. Probably because he wore bright orange or yellow and was everywhere! He may have even give you some Chimichangas or coupons for free Mexi-Melts. But he was more likely to have handed you a flawless bottle feed in even the most remote of feed zones. He was a friend of every racer. A supporter of each and every athlete.

Ben, Ed, me, Jan, and Thom...Big Bear Fall Classic...

Although I had stepped away from Jose Ole, Thom remained a "family member" to me, an Uncle. At Fontana he helped me get some stuff lined out before the start and stuck around to give me my bottle feeds.

When I received the call yesterday I was crushed. Thom was a man who saw something in me and made it happen. His goal for the area was to bring mountain biking alive!! To give athletes like myself the Golden Ticket and to remove most if not all, obsticles that stood in our way. He introduced both Shelli and I to racing here in SoCal, a life-turn that otherwise, may have never taken place. He looked at me one day and said, I think you can become something and I want to help you realize your dreams. That happens like once in a lifetime.

Ben, Me, Carolyn and Thom...they went WAY out of their way to support and watch me race...in NORTH CAROLINA.....

This loss leaves me completely upset and angry and hurt. A man who would do anything for his wife and two daughters, who loved the sport of Mountain Biking soooo much that he began his own team and backed it with his heart and soul.

It seems like these things just keep coming. It makes me scrape the frosting off - all those lame emotions where you get offended my this or that, feel butt hurt about how someone treated or didn't treat you - and get down to the basics of solid relationships. I am forced to remember to surround myself with people of value and who value me. To guard my tongue and my emotions as I interact with any and everyone.

Costa Rica taught me Pura Vida - as Todd Park translated: Pure Life - Living the life yo!

Live EVERY DAY like you mean it...with a purpose...and with a ton of LOVE...

Shelli and I went out riding today in our OLDEST and ORANGEST Jose Ole clothes!! We started wearing them 5 years ago and they are still just as comfy! we even timed it right to be at Stell when the Old Guys finished their ride...funny thing, they all had their Jose Ole stuff on too...


And of course, go ride your bike.

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

Joy I am so sorry to hear about Thom! He was a good person and always had a smile on! I will miss him at the races for sure. We spent a lot of time in the pits together and jokes and laughter will be missed by a lot of folks.
Jason Ranoa

spencerdud said...

Joy I am so sad for you! We all know that many times friends are closer than family. You are in my prayers.

rushman said...

Joy, very nice... I'm going to miss him very much he's just a great guy that will be missed very,very much at the race's I'm absolutly devastated.

Randy Rush

Krista Park said...

Oh Joy! I am so sorry!!!
Are you okay? We'll be thinking of all of his friends and family.

tabetha said...

Devastating - just horrible news. I wish I had known him. He sounds like he was an angel on earth. My thoughts will be with his family and great friends of his, like you Joy.

Scott991 said...

RIP Thom Blaine. Well stated Joy - Thom did live every day. He was kind, considerate, and a genuine nice guy. You are right - Thom was someone of value - who valued his family and friends, and it showed. He will be sorely missed.

Cindy Paxton said...

Dear Joy, I am also shocked and deeply saddened by Thom's tragic accident and death. As one of the OLD GIRL cyclists I will mosty certainly miss Thom and his positive energy and dry wit. Thom was always encouraging to fellow riders, fast and slow. In all of my interactions with Thom he was a true "gentle man". He could kick butt on his bike AND he always had time to help anyone who needed it as you have so nicely described Joy. From what I know Thom was devoted to his wife and daughters. My heart, prayers and sympathy go to his family at this time of unbelievable saddness and loss. To his family of friends out there on the road and trails, keep on riding and don't forget to take the time to help someone else up the hill! Cindy P.

Laura said...

Joy - thanks for the wonderful post about Thom. He was as you said, always so supportive and kind. His family and friends and of course biking were all dear to his heart and he was just a tremendous human being. He will be truly missed by all.

Laura Nomura

Fit Mommy said...

Sorry Joy! Thinking something was up when I saw you at Stell's the other day.
Keep your chin up.

Maxwell said...

Hi Joy, my name is Darin Maxwell. My daughter and I raced up at Rim Nordic for a few years. We met Thom and Ben, and quickly became friends. Thom even offered Lacey a spot on the Jose Ole Team.
If there's a chance you see Ben, please tell him I'm trying to get in touch with him.
I was very saddened to find out about Thom. He was a great person, and he will be missed.