John Lees-Extreme Hiker at 65 (and still living)

John, you have made it to 65 and who’d have ever guessed it, leading the life of thrills and adventure that you do. Over the years your courage, limitless strength, your cunning, your skillful handling of danger, your ability to follow trail blazes, all have combined to make you one of the outstanding lowland hikers in the country (sorry, I meant county). Who shall ever forget your slide up the gully in Meadowlily, or for that matter, the downhill slide on the same trail. Such poise, such courage, such dedication to your chosen sport. Someday fellow hikers will say of him: he knew where he was going, he followed the white blazes without hesitation, he understood the different challenges of up and down, and he always respected his fellow hikers when the need for relief struck him. He was a private man, always seeking out a private spot for that private act that, now and then, visits us all. He knew the importance of a good hat and always respected what lay behind a good long thumb.

We, your lifelong companions, wish you a very happy 65th birthday and we really mean it when we say…. Take a hike!

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