Stan Pocock: Why We Spent 4 Days to Row 15 Minutes.
The name George Pocock is practically a household word thanks to The Boys in the Boat, but less is known about his son Stan, who passed just over a week ago. His memorial service took place today at the Conibear shell house.
At times like this when there are no words, tribes gather around their storytellers – and there were lots of great stories, bringing laughter and tears.
But the one who stood out was his granddaughter Sarah Chun. As much of a legend as Stan was to the rowing community, she will best remember her “Poppa” for his skill at making animal-shaped pancakes.
It was she who scattered Stan’s ashes at the finish line in the Montlake Cut.
Stan’s connection to the Rats ran deep, and I asked those who knew him to jot down a few lines. But they expressed themselves far better by their efforts today, spearheaded by John Collins. Why did we spend four days rigging and derigging 4 boats, getting them on the Kingston ferry at 0 dark thirty – and showing up at his memorial?
…For the chance to row to his final resting place and cast a single white flower from his wreath into the water.
I watched and photographed them today, but I can only imagine what was going through their heads and hearts. I’ll let the pictures – and the backstories – do the talking for them. (more photos here)
Tuf as Nails – The Husky Challenger
Steve Chapin – The Pocock Project
Ted Shoulberg – The Hoh
Jim Buckley – Ancient Mariner and friend
As I left, I saw several of the awesome young “purple men”. By now they were sporting hoodies and earbuds and dirt bikes, looking like every other kid in the mall. I wondered how long the Pocock DNA that’s stamped into their every boat and every stroke would survive in their world.
A single word came into my head. “Hope”