Thursday, September 6, 2012

In Memorium

In case you missed it during the WOSH Morning News Focus on Wednesday, our old friend and colleague, JT Vogt passed away yesterday morning.  JT had been battling cancer for the past few years--and had really been in great discomfort for some time.

The one thing I will always remember about JT is his passion for life.  With the nickname "The Computer Guy", he was passionate about technology.  JT was a LINUX guy--hating Microsoft and Apple.  He also loved letting our listeners know about the newest tech toys, helpful websites and things to avoid on-line.

JT was passionate about his dogs.  He and his wife bred and raised German Shepards and the rare Japanese breed--the Shiba Inu.  They took preserving the health of the breeds very seriously--and helped out Shepard and Shiba rescue operations as well.

JT was a proud German.  He spoke the language.  He loved the food.  He and his wife traveled to the Old Country to trace back his family heritage.  They even dropped a couple thousand dollars to buy a custom-made cuckoo clock delivered to their home (which, believe it or not, was serviced here in Oshkosh).

JT was passionate about politics and the rights of Americans.  He loved to own and shoot guns.  If the cancer hadn't taken him yesterday morning--Bill Clinton's speech last night probably would have killed him.

JT was passionate about aviation.  As a licensed pilot he flew often. The week of EAA Airventure made JT like a kid in a candy store.  Like myself, JT loved the Warbirds--and loved to hear the old World War Two pilots discuss their experiences.  JT also was a huge space nut--and always wanted to hear from any Astronauts that visited Oshkosh as well.  Our coverage of Airventure will never be the same without him.

JT was also incredibly proud of his father.  Herr Vogt stormed the beaches in Normandy--and fought all the way into Germany at the end of the war. 

And JT was incredibly giving.  Many of my own electronic items--at home and here in the Newsroom--had been fixed or upgraded thanks to JT.  And I mentioned the efforts he made to help his beloved dogs.

But one of the neatest things that JT did every year was to host an event for those manning the Federal Pavilion at Airventure every year.  "Meadowfest" as he liked to call it, featured food, drink, live music, target shooting, and fireworks (set off by JT himself).  It was just a chance for these people who were away from home for more than a week to get away from EAA and their hotels--and enjoy a bit of good old-fashioned Wisconsin Gemutlichkeit.

The world is a better place because of JT Vogt--and my life is better for having known him.  He will be missed.

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