Eight Bells: Gordo Johnson
Published on April 8th, 2021
Gordo Johnson (lower left) of Newport Beach, CA crossed the bar early on April 1, 2021. Gordo was 68 and passed after a six month battle with a very aggressive variety of Leukemia. He was in Comfort Care in Newport Beach, CA at his passing.
He was a crewman that everyone wanted on their boat. He did it all when racing, including winning college team at the Douglas Cup and Sloop Nationals at USC, and victorious at Congressional Cups with a few different skippers.
He sailed everything from Sabots, one design dinghies, IOR, the sleds, and maxis. As owner of a boat maintenance group, he sailed the Med circuit (e.g. Sardinia), the SORC, all the Mexican coast distance races, Transpac, the Big Boat Series, and all the California coastal races. He sailed as delivery or cruising crew the entire US east and west coasts, the Caribbean, and the South Pacific.
He was someone you wanted on deck so you could sleep easy, but you would rather be on his watch so you could jawbone all night with one of his special coffee drinks or a ‘sunrise chardonnay’ at dawn.
As a lifelong friend Dennis Durgan said, “Sail on Gordo, you will be missed.”