We recently lost another legend! John Koller, originally from Minnesota, passed away in Albuquerque last month due to complications from the Corona Virus. He was a multi-sport athlete with strong community connections. He also was a family first individual and successful businessman.
John would mention your name at the beginning of each encounter. I valued our interactions; during a racquetball event or while exchanging dialogue at a local coffee house. Topics might include history, politics, religion, and travel. Oftentimes I shared my athletic experiences throughout Latin America and Asia. Then, he reminisced about combat missions over parts of Europe during the Second World War. We were fortunate to have closed a few successful insurance and real estate transactions.
John and his counterpart, the late Ralph Waddington, had a vision for bringing an age group international racquetball event to New Mexico. In 1984, they presented their vision to me. We all agreed to move forward; and, we began the journey the following year by hosting the North American 40+ Championships in Albuquerque. In 1989, the tournament transitioned to the IRF World Senior Racquetball Championships. This year will mark its 36th edition!
John was buried at Santa Fe National Cemetery a few months prior to reaching age 96. He leaves behind wife Jo, and a host of children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, and friends.
May Pagosa Springs; High Altitude Shootout Racquetball; PLPOA (open)
June Lubbock; M & M Classic Racquetball; Zachs Club (open)
August Albuquerque; 36th IRF World Senior Racquetball; NM Sports & Wellness (35+)
Other: National Paddleball Championships;
NM State Racquetball/Paddleball/Squash 57;
Ralph Waddington New Mexico Games
Yoga pose of the month: Standing back bend…
Stand with feet hip width apart
Place hands with fingers downward against lower back; shoulders back & down
Arch lower and middle back and look upward; hold for 15-30 seconds
Affirmation: I choose faith over fear