This is a hard post to write. Yesterday our good friend John Solomon passed away.
John was an incredibly enthusiastic advocate for emergency preparedness, and we’re grateful to have had the pleasure of working with him on a number of projects over the past few years.
John inspired us by using his skills as a journalist, author, and prolific blogger
to make the world a better, and safer place.
He stood out, not only because of his huge heart and encyclopedic knowledge about emergency preparedness, but because he encouraged collaboration, creativity, innovation and FUN in a field that can often seem dry and stodgy.
He once said:
If we are to build a more ready, resilient American nation, we need to get more of the public’s heart beating again about preparedness… using creativity and intelligence as well as the emerging social media tools and popular culture.
Like the time he interviewed Grover
– yes, THE Grover of Sesame Street
– for his “What Should We Tell The Public?” video series (in which he often interviewed emergency management leaders from FEMA, the Department of Homeland Security, and the Red Cross among others). Or the way he embraced the use of silly puns like “prepare-aphernalia.”
After he started chemotherapy treatment, John became an even more outspoken advocate for blood donation as a part of community emergency preparedess.
In his own words:
While I sit watching the bags drip into my arm in the hospital clinic, I cannot help but think about the people who have taken the time — and weathered the brief poke in the arm — to make sure that someone they didn’t know (like me) would be able to fight leukemia or deal with other of life’s challenges.
John, of course, had been a blood donor himself when he was able. He walked the walk. And he made a positive impact on the world.
On behalf of myself, Lise, and Wendy (and I’m sure everyone else who had the chance to work with him)… we’ll miss you John.