Cyclists of Greater Seattle
Riding for Fun, Friends, and Adventure

Remembering Tom Schaefer

  • 11 Mar 2022 6:11 PM
    Reply # 12657563 on 12653777

    Tom Schaefer on my Dorffel deck for my Birthday party. I will always remember and miss him.

    John Verrilli

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  • 11 Mar 2022 3:51 PM
    Reply # 12657380 on 12653777

    Tom was a GREAT PERSON in so many and varied ways. He loved life and lived it to the fullest. He was not only charismatic in his own uniquely iconic and charming ways, but he was a charming, friendly, kind, and yes loving. Loving of life, loving of his many and varied hobbies and activities, and loving of the multitude of people drawn to his wonderful personality and knowledge of his passionate activities and hobbies.

     I knew him as a cyclist through the COGS bicycle club. Cycling was one of his many loves and he was an expert at it. He gladly and enthusiastically shared his extensive knowledge about cycling, routes he found particularly enjoyable and most importantly the joy and fun one could experience through cycling. Tom will be greatly missed for many reasons; for sure he will be missed by all his COGS cycling friends.

    May Tom rest in peace with the knowledge his contributions enriched so many of our lives.

  • 10 Mar 2022 5:08 PM
    Reply # 12655069 on 12653777


    Thanks for sharing the sad news.  He was doing one of the things he liked to do, besides riding.  Sad, but glad he was doing something he enjoyed.  Hope we can make our worldly exit like Tom ... i.e. Experiencing Life !!!

    Tom was tough and I'm honored to have been able to ride with (behind) him.

  • 10 Mar 2022 2:24 PM
    Reply # 12654764 on 12653777

    Sorry Richard, not Tom!

  • 10 Mar 2022 2:22 PM
    Reply # 12654762 on 12653777

    Well done, Gus, Susan, and Tom! A thoughtful and loving tribute to a dedicated cyclist.

  • 10 Mar 2022 11:36 AM
    Reply # 12654318 on 12653777

    Great tribute Gus!

  • 10 Mar 2022 11:33 AM
    Reply # 12654315 on 12653777

    I remember Tom as an Icon riding at least one 100 mile ride per month for years; he was very talkative and extremely well informed and never once had a bad work about anyone.
    I wonder about COGS having a memorial ride in his honor at least once of a distance so as many COGS riders could join in and remember him and his unrivaled achievements.

    i will miss him.

    John Verrilli

  • 10 Mar 2022 11:00 AM
    Reply # 12654227 on 12653777

    Kudos to Susan, Richard, and Gus; for preparing this superb tribute to Tom!

    Nevertheless, having said that --- I hate to tell on a man, but Schaefer had an unshakable shoe fetish:

    SiDi Dominators.

    Hey, me too!  (Same bike shoe, pictured.)

    Peace be upon him.

    - Arnie

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    Last modified: 29 Mar 2022 4:22 PM | Arnold Chin
  • 10 Mar 2022 9:23 AM
    Reply # 12653998 on 12653777

    Very sad indeed! Thank you Gus for this wonderful tribute. I will miss Tom's unique, strong positive spirit. His sense of humor and twinkle in his eye always right there. RIP Tom.

  • 10 Mar 2022 7:33 AM
    Message # 12653777
    Gustav Jansson (Administrator)

    Tom Schaefer


    It is with great sadness that we report that our friend, COGS member and fellow cyclist, Tom Schaefer, has passed away due to a diving related accident in Mexico.  Tom was a real character, in the best sense of the word.  Those of us who had the pleasure to ride with Tom and get to know him appreciated his sense of humor, his knowledge of the world, both natural and human, and the eccentricities that made him such a unique person.  

    Tom is survived by his girlfriend, tandem partner, and fellow COGS member, Grace Abbott and his niece Lerryn Schaefer Donatelle of Chicago.

    For more about Tom, especially his life beyond cycling, check out the memorial website set up by Lerryn and Nick Schaefer Donatelle.  You can also contribute stories and photos about Tom on that website.

    Below are some memories contributed by a few of Tom’s friends. 

    • Tom’s ability to carry on a non-stop conversation up a 10% grade and never run out of breath.
    • On his old red steel-framed bike, he could outride most folks on a carbon fiber or a titanium bike.
    • Tom rarely finished a ride with the group. He would dutifully ride to the start, be there on time, but had so much energy and enthusiasm that he usually ended up riding off on some longer and/or hillier variation.
    • Tom had an amazing record of riding a century every month of each year. When circumstances forced him to break his streak, it wasn’t long before he started a new streak.
    • Tom never met a hill he didn’t want to ride. He was always game for a “diabolical” ride involving a ridiculous amount of hill climbing, especially when it involved Cougar or Squak mountains.
    • Tom had a special “deal” with the big hill on Juanita Drive. He’d wait for you at the top, but riding up the hill he always gave it his all. His all meant the rest of us were usually left way behind.
    • Tom loved RAMROD and rode it whenever the lottery provided an opportunity.
    • Some people track their steps each day. Tom always knew how many miles he’d ridden so far that year, on each of his three bikes.
    • Tom loved the 520-bridge bike trail and many of his bike routes involved at least one crossing on the 520 trail.
    • Tom had favorite trees along many of his rides that he liked to point out so others could enjoy them too.
    • Tom rarely bought anything new. Whatever he needed, especially bicycle parts, he acquired from sources like eBay, Craig’s List, and Recycled Cycles. He was generous with the treasures he found, giving things to friends who could use the items he didn’t need.
    • In addition to cycling, Tom loved sailing and diving. He participated in volunteer fish surveys and could tell you about the health problems of the sea star population and the health status of various coral reefs. He particularly liked diving trips to Mexico.
    • Tom was a natural teacher. At various times he taught an introductory course in the Oceanography department at the University of Washington and taught marine science to fifth graders in local schools as a part of The Seattle Aquarium and Pacific Marine Research.

    To honor Tom, COGS will be hosting a ride of one of his favorite in-city loops.  Later in the season, if the rest of us can get in shape, COGS will put together a century on his behalf.

    by Susan Price, Richard Petters, and Gus Jansson on behalf of COGS

    4 files
    Last modified: 10 Mar 2022 4:06 PM | Gustav Jansson (Administrator)

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