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John McAlister - Final Cut

John McAlister - May 20, 2016

SAPFM has lost a great friend in John McAlister. 

  John passed away this morning.  The details of the arrangements are not finalized, but the family wanted us to know and to pass the word.

John was our second Cartouche Award Recipient in 2001 and a long time supporter and friend to many of us in SAPFM.  He was a gentleman and loved SAPFM.  He came to me in 2013 and expressed an interest in helping establish a educational fund.  His family foundation provided our initial funds for our educational fund, which was later named in honor of John.

He spoke to me often about the Telfair Exhibit which was held in Savannah, Georgia, in 2006.  He asked several times would SAPFM ever produce an exhibit book similar to what was done for the Connecticut Historical Society joint display with SAPFM in 2012.

With the help of Mark Arnold and Steve Lash, I recently was able to produce a photo book based on the article written by Mark Arnold for the SAPFM American Period Furniture Journal in 2006.  When I sent it to John, he was very appreciative.  His daughter told me he kept it by his chair and admired it often.  I know for a fact he bragged about the book to some of his other SAPFM friends every chance he could.

Just a few weeks ago he asked me to order additional copies that he could give to his children.  That was the last time I spoke to John.  Even though he was clearly weak, he seemed to be in good spirits.

I am grateful to have known John.  I am a better person for knowing him and will miss him and his enthusiasm for furniture making, SAPFM, and life.

A more comprehensive tribute will be written about John at a later time.  Details of the funeral arrangements are tentatively planned for next Friday morning, May 27.

Ken Johnson

SAPFM Vice President

The Society of American
Period Furniture Makers
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