Ron Akeson RIP.

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Joshua Smith
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Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by Joshua Smith » Sun May 04, 2014 4:46 pm

Ron was an amazing guy. I'm proud to have called him my friend as well as my mentor and my instructor. I will always treasure the C card in my drawer with his name in the instructor spot.

I first met him when I was a brand new CCR diver, trying to figure out how to start diving deep shipwrecks. I quickly found out that there weren't a whole lot of people actually doing this, and Ron's name kept coming up over and over again.

He was a little reserved about letting me come on the deep dives at first, because he hadn't trained me or even dived with me, but quickly accepted me after I had been hanging around for a short time. I was absurdly proud the first time he asked me to buddy with him on a tech dive. It felt like a seal of approval.

He was a quiet guy, unless you got him talking about something he was passionate about. In which case, you couldn't shut him up. I had many conversations with him over the years, where time just seemed to melt away, and I'd suddenly realize that hours had passed. Many a time, I would drive past the big dive shop 5 minutes from my house in Seattle on my way up to Ron's shop in Bellingham, to buy gear.....partly to support my friend, and partly for the long conversations we'd inevitably have about diving and life.

He was a natural leader, but not the loud and dominating type. People followed his lead naturally because they trusted him. I've been noticing, since he died, how many people refer to him as a mentor. I think this is for the same reason. I always knew I could trust him, and that he'd have wise counsel for any problems I was facing.

Tragically, Ron passed away a week ago as the result of a diving accident. We still don't know exactly what happened, and we may never know for sure. Please refrain from discussing the circumstances, and especially from speculation, at this time. Once we are satisfied that we have all the information, we will pass it on.


Fair Winds and Following seas, my friend.
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Jeff Pack
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by Jeff Pack » Sun May 04, 2014 5:26 pm

RIP Ron. I've only known Ron a little over a year. He was my instructor for Mod 1 on my meg, and was a natural choice for follow on instruction. I'm sad that was cut so short.

What I loved about Ron the most was that smirky grin he'd get as he was about to tell me something I thought I knew, but really didnt know after all.

He was a patient instructor, that loved what he did. In class I' d listen to him tell us all about deep wreck diving in Puget Sound, which had little to do with our course, but we learned so much more from it for that.

So long Ron, you touched more people than you'll ever know, and in ways you'll never know.
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Emilyrc
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by Emilyrc » Sun May 04, 2014 5:52 pm

He was my instructor. I would spend 2 hours at his shop for a fill just bullshitting and learning. He was an amazing man. He is surely missed in the dive community.

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Dusty2
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by Dusty2 » Sun May 04, 2014 9:12 pm

Though I didn't know him well I know that he left a hole in our small community that will never filled but those of you that knew him well and learned so much from him are his true legacy. Though he is gone his legacy will live on through you and those that will learn from you. He will help many new divers through you just as he helped you. As long as you follow his lead and pass on his knowledge and skills his legacy will live.

My condolences to all those hurting from his passing. May you find solace in passing on what you learned from him.

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YellowEye
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by YellowEye » Sun May 04, 2014 10:42 pm

Very sad.

I met him only once. He was very knowledgeable, helpful and friendly. He seemed like a real solid fellow. Condolences.

-Eric

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rjw
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by rjw » Mon May 05, 2014 11:48 am

Joshua Smith wrote:Ron was an amazing guy. I'm proud to have called him my friend as well as my mentor and my instructor. I will always treasure the C card in my drawer with his name in the instructor spot.

I first met him when I was a brand new CCR diver, trying to figure out how to start diving deep shipwrecks. I quickly found out that there weren't a whole lot of people actually doing this, and Ron's name kept coming up over and over again.

He was a little reserved about letting me come on the deep dives at first, because he hadn't trained me or even dived with me, but quickly accepted me after I had been hanging around for a short time. I was absurdly proud the first time he asked me to buddy with him on a tech dive. It felt like a seal of approval.

He was a quiet guy, unless you got him talking about something he was passionate about. In which case, you couldn't shut him up. I had many conversations with him over the years, where time just seemed to melt away, and I'd suddenly realize that hours had passed. Many a time, I would drive past the big dive shop 5 minutes from my house in Seattle on my way up to Ron's shop in Bellingham, to buy gear.....partly to support my friend, and partly for the long conversations we'd inevitably have about diving and life.

He was a natural leader, but not the loud and dominating type. People followed his lead naturally because they trusted him. I've been noticing, since he died, how many people refer to him as a mentor. I think this is for the same reason. I always knew I could trust him, and that he'd have wise counsel for any problems I was facing.

Tragically, Ron passed away a week ago as the result of a diving accident. We still don't know exactly what happened, and we may never know for sure. Please refrain from discussing the circumstances, and especially from speculation, at this time. Once we are satisfied that we have all the information, we will pass it on.


Fair Winds and Following seas, my friend.


Thanks Josh. Well put.
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Penopolypants
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by Penopolypants » Mon May 05, 2014 12:41 pm

Good mentors and patient instructors are invaluable, and he was an all-around fantastic person to boot. This is a terrible loss for his friends and family, and for the scuba community as a whole. My deepest sympathy goes to all who knew him.
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by LowDrag » Mon May 05, 2014 5:10 pm

Very well said Josh. I never had the chance to meet Ron but from what I have read here I wish I would have had the chance.

RIP Ron

Dave

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rjw
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by rjw » Mon May 05, 2014 8:32 pm

I used to give Ron shit about how he trained people. If you went out & nailed some skill he would never hit you again with it. If you struggled or maybe just weren't as smooth as he liked. He would hammer you with that skill on every follow on dive. Basically beat you over the head with it.
He denied it at first.
The absolute best one I witnessed was when he was teaching a friend. Ron pointed to a piece of gear & signaled "broken". I knew the correct response & waited for the skills to performed. Without hesitation Ron's broken signal was then met with a "fixed it" signal. Ron's blank stare was beyond funny.
Kind of wish I had thought of that during my training. Pure genius. I'm pretty sure he could hear me laughing.
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NollyG
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by NollyG » Wed May 07, 2014 5:23 pm

Often, I find myself thinking, “How did I get here? How did my life turn out this good?” For me, in so many ways, Ron is the answer.

He was my boss when I worked at his dive shop in college. He was my instructor for my Nitrox, Divemaster, Deco Procedures, Advanced Nitrox, and Normoxic Trimix certifications. He was my dive mentor who taught me everything I know about diving. He was my dive buddy on trips all over the Pacific Northwest, and on a trip to Dominica back in November, the last time I saw and dove with him. And most importantly, for so many of us, he was a friend.

I will miss a lot things about him, but as far as diving with him goes, it was his sense of adventure that I will miss most. You want to go on a dive trip? Go for it. You want to dive the way out there sites, that are too deep, there’s too much current, or it’s too exposed to wind and waves? Ron was the man! Deception Pass, Turn Point, Whale Rocks, the Diamond Knot, Race Rocks, Dodd Narrows, Gabriola Pass, Skookumchuck Rapids, Nakwakto Rapids, and on and on…So many dives I’ll never forget and Ron planned them all! I was lucky enough to tag along.

Rest in peace Ron.

Nolan

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Jimothy
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by Jimothy » Wed May 07, 2014 8:39 pm

Ron was my go-to guy when I lived in Bellingham. I never had the opportunity to dive with him, but spent countless hours in his shop while waiting for air fills discussing gear, NW dive sites, etc.

Best wishes to all his friends and family in the difficult time.

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spatman
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by spatman » Thu May 15, 2014 12:35 pm

Out of respect for those affected by Ron's passing, please keep this thread as a memorial to Ron and not discuss details about his accident.

Thank you.
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SeaDNA
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by SeaDNA » Thu May 29, 2014 8:17 am

So sorry.

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rjw
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Re: Ron Akeson RIP.

Post by rjw » Thu May 29, 2014 11:45 am

There will be a Celebration of Life for him on Sunday, June 22 from 2-5pm at the Squalicum Yacht Club in Bellingham, 2633 S. Harbor Loop Dr. It will be a potluck because Ron always loved the variety of foods! Please bring a dish (anything). There is a BBQ there and it is a BYOB (bring your own beer or wine). We will have some though. Come and share some cheer and good memories of our friend Ron.
No amount of Helium can make a dumbass smart. - Chatterton
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