Passing of Stephan Els

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bclarence
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Passing of Stephan Els

Sadly, avid windsurfer and Atlanta resident, Stephan Els, passed away yesterday at the age of 43. He will be sorely missed by his Atlanta family and friends and his family back in South Africa. When not with his family, he was happiest out on the lake in a pumping wind. Please contact me at

if you would like information about the service, or like to leave a message of condolence.

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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

So, so sad.
I spoke with Brett who posted the note above.
Stephan was in S Africa visiting family. He was out for a run and suffered a massive heart attack.
Details of Atlanta service pending, but probably in a couple of weeks.

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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

I'm out of town and on my phone. Otherwise I'd fill up the page about Stephan. We had a lot of adventures together and he was one of the nicest and sweetest people I've had the honor of knowing. But even more he was devoted to his family and talked about them constantly.

He will be missed

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peelskid
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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

I am so sorry to hear this. God has him now.

PeelSkid

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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

Via one of Stephan's colleagues at Cox:

This information shared by his friend (Gareth Morgan) regarding the situation:

As many of you are aware, our dear friend, Stephan Els passed away yesterday, April 10. His wife, Jocelyn, will be traveling to South Africa this week and the funeral will be this Friday in South Africa. There will be a Memorial Service in the U.S. likely end of next week. Please visit Steph’s Memorial site for updates and to share your photos and stories of Steph with Jocelyn and the boys. http://www.forevermissed.com/stephan-wilhelm-els/#about In lieu of flowers/gifts, we ask you to give to the boy’s education fund at http://go.fidelity.com/7qgf

More details to follow for the U.S. Memorial Service.

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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

Brett asked if we could share the following in our community and with his friends;

The forever missed site will be updated with the Atlanta memorial service details.

As many of you are aware, our dear friend, Stephan Els passed away yesterday, April 10. His wife, Jocelyn, will be traveling to South Africa this week and the funeral will be this Friday in South Africa. There will be a Memorial Service in the U.S. likely end of next week. Please visit Steph’s Memorial site for updates and to share your photos and stories of Steph with Jocelyn and the boys. http://www.forevermissed.com/stephan-wilhelm-els/#about

In lieu of flowers/gifts, we ask you to give to the boy’s education fund at http://go.fidelity.com/7qgf. More details to follow for the U.S. Memorial Service.

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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

I am truly shocked and saddened. I just saw Stephan about at week ago when he stopped by my house to pick up a fin. We talked for quite a while and had some good laughs. It was great to see him. He was so young, and full of life. I could never have imagined that a week later he would be gone. My condolences to his family. friends and co-workers. He was always the guy who would come out to sail no matter the weather, and it was a lot fun whenever he was at the lake. He was always so positive and cheerful, it was just a lot more fun when he was out sailing with us.

The Last Windsurfer Standing

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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

It's hard for us to grasp the reality of Stephan's death. We talked by phone a few days before he left for South Africa to visit his mother. With a busy work schedule, Stephan eagerly looked forward to weekends when the wind blew. He was so much fun to sail with.

You may not know that before moving to the States, Stephan was also an avid paraglider. My wife & I traveled to South Africa several years ago, and reveled in Stephan's stories of paragliding in the Drakensberg Mountains. Having seen the Drakensberg, we knew how much skill and daring was required to soar there.

Stephan was a family guy who was proud of his wife & sons. I can't imagine the depth of their sorrow at losing him. Our hearts go to to them.

Barrett

rgenet
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Joined: 12/26/2002 - 08:16
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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

Yes, I can't imagine their sorrow. Thoughts and prayers out to his family. How old are his sons? I'm trying to remember if we saw his children at the Fall Classic this year. Do they get on the water (yet)?

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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

At the fall regatta

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Re: Passing of Stephan Els
randy wrote:

He was always the guy who would come out to sail no matter the weather, and it was a lot fun whenever he was at the lake. He was always so positive and cheerful, it was just a lot more fun when he was out sailing with us.

First one out in about 40 degrees and the water all the way up in the grass. This was at the first of the year.
Sorry, I'm chopping onions again...

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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

.

bclarence
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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

Windsurfing community, Thanks for these lovely words and photos. Stephan's wife looked at these too, and was warmed to know Stephan was so appreciated out on the lake, enjoying his hobby with some great guys.

Reminder that the service is this Friday (4/22) at 2pm at Dunwoody Baptist Church. 1445 Mt Vernon Rd, Dunwoody, GA 30338.

Also, some of his friends are going out on Thursday evening (4/21) to enjoy a weekly tradition that Stephan started - Thursday night beers. We'll be at Olde Blind Dog Pub in Brookhaven from about 7:30pm onwards. Not a big deal but would love to see you there if you can make it.

Olde Blind Dog - Brookhaven
705 Town Boulevard
Atlanta, GA 30319

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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

I had forgotten about this completely, until I read the new posts in this thread. Here's a video of Stephan landsailing with me as Roswell HS. It was a day too cold for the lake, so he joined me on the pavement. One of the most fun times ever.

The Last Windsurfer Standing

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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

From February at Old Fed

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Re: Passing of Stephan Els

I had the pleasure of meeting many of Stephan's Thursday night crew and his brother who had flown in from Australia to be with Stephan's family this week. They are exactly the kind of people you'd imagine he'd have in his life: funny, kind, friendly and very positive.

Funny moment: Finding out that Stephan had started windsurfing and sailing as a teen because his poor eyesight made it difficult for him to play ball sports.
Awkward moment: Realizing that I, too, wasn't good at ball sports so ended up doing a lot of cycling and other outdoor sports. However, I can't blame eyesight but only my lack of coordination and skill.

Funny moment: His friends talked about going into his basement and seeing "five or six boards and sails"
Awkward moment: Wondering what they would think if they saw my garage.

The Stephan we knew was the same Stephan everyone else knew - a great guy.

Humbling moment: Everyone there told me how much windsurfing meant to Stephan and how much he loved it. For those of us who enjoyed his company on the water, we saw him at a place where he was truly happy.