Dear Tuna skippers,
I am sad to let you know that Tom Montoya passed away on the evening of
July 4th. Tom had been ill for a while and Anna, his wife, told that his
last days were peaceful.
Most of us have met Tom as fleet captain of the Santana 22 fleet on the San
Francisco Bay (2008-2010). He helped many of us with tips and hands-on,
working on our boats and learning how to sail and race on the San Francisco
Tom bought his Tuna #5194 (then "Pink Tutu", formerly "White Lightning") in
2006 or 2007, worked lovingly on her, and named her "Meli'ki" after a
friend who was struggling with cancer who has since passed away. He loved
his little Tuna and raced her to her full potential. He raced "Meli'ki"
single handed with great success in the SSS series and then got a team
together to race her in the YRA OD series and S22 nationals. He was SF Bay
fleet champion in 2008, 2009, and 2010, won the YRA Champion of the
Champions regatta in 2008, and came in 2nd in the nationals in 2009 & 2010.
Our current co-fleet captain, Deb Fehr, is now the proud owner of "Meli'ki"
Sailing with Tom was a blast! He was a perfectionist, always striving to do
better, and readily apologized if things got too intense or if he made a
mistake. His calm presence at the helm made it seem easy to to a spinnaker
gibe under the South Tower in 25 kn coming back from Bonita. After races,
it was always good to sail back down the estuary to Alameda, while telling
tall stories and peeling off layers of foulies & fleece. Next time you go
out, please enjoy the SF Bay a little bit extra for Tom and raise the
spinnaker in his honor if you have a chance.
Tom was one of the good guys, both on the water and off the water, where he
was dedicated to Anna & their sons, and where he mentored many of their
friends. The bay & Alameda will be empty without him.
Meli'ki team member 2009-2010
Co-fleet captain Santana fleet SF Bay 2011-2015
Byte Size #801
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