THIS IS CHRISTOPHER KELLAR
Christopher Kellar was born on February 16th, 2000.
He passed away on February 21st, 2021. He was 21 years old.
Life can be complicated. There is no such thing as the Perfect life. Or the Perfect relationship. Or the Perfect working situation.
I use the word perfect all the time when describing waves. But if someone really wanted to, they could find flaws in the perfect waves that I describe from time to time. It's all in what we perceive to see, and experience. That's not to say that Life can't be good, or that we can't experience perfect days. We absolutely can, and do. It's just that sometimes, things are not what we think they are.
Christopher Kellar had an untimely tragic passing.
And I'll leave it at that.
I will however, share with you some of my own personal feelings, and times that I shared with Christopher, his siblings, his parents, and his friends here on the seacoast.
SURF FAMILY ROBINSON
Some of you know that I ran an annual beach party for 25 years on Labor day Weekend. I called it SURF FAMILY ROBINSON. It was a day designated for the surfers and their kids to have one last great beach day before school started. We all looked forward to SFR. For 25 years I watched the kids and their parents come and go. So many great memories were born of that last summer Beach Party. I had a handful of volunteers who would help me put it together
every year. One of them Duffy McCarthy has taken up where I left off.
As I said, I watched the kids literally grow up before our very eyes each year.
To this day, I'll meet adults who were young groms back in the day, and had participated in that annual tradition. All of them have nothing but fond memories of SFR. I mean how could they not? We would take them surfing, boogie boarding, have them play games, go on treasure hunts, and the day would end when the dreadful Pirate Jonas would show up looking for his buried treasure.
It was in a word "magical." Ask any kid who went there from 1992 to 2019.
I welcomed everyone. It went from a handful of surfers and their kids, to almost at one time about 75 to 100 kids. I was called Captain Ralph and the kids and their parents had to address me as that. It was a wonderful way to end the summer. All the surfers and their families gathered for one final beach party
I'm not exactly sure when I met the newly formed Kellar family but it was somewhere around 2007-2009? I knew the parents Andrew and Ginger before meeting the kids. We were all so stoked that they adopted these three beautiful kids. They all fit in with the other kids and parents, and joined in on the fun that was/is SFR. Each year I would take a group photo, here's the group photo from 2009.
The Kellar kids are in this group photo. If you click on this pic you can see a larger version of it. And this pic below? Behind the two twin girls is young Christopher. He's throwing the double shakas. He's the only one throwing shakas. You can see how stoked he is.
You can click on this pic to see a larger version as well.
I know all of these kids. They are all grown up now, going to college, some have even graduated and are working, some in relationships, and just living the life that kids to adults should be doing. And they still surf. The Kellar kids fit right into the surf mold. They loved to hang on the beach and go surfing. Chris, Laini, and Johnny and all their friends. In my mind, they will always be these young kids/groms at SFR. Even my own kids. I think of those wonderful happy times and it warms my heart. Thank God for the pics and videos over the years.
I get that life gets in the way of youth. And nobody stays young forever. But at Surf Family Robinson, everyone is still a kid at heart.
These are a series of photos I shot of the Kellar gang at The Wall the summer of 2009. This is Chris already showing the early signs of having a style all of his own. I often said, you can't teach a kid style, they either have it or they don't. Chris had it.
And like I wrote in this caption, "there's some style developing here."
Here's Chris's little brother Johnny. Like I said, these kids were surfers.
They were a surf family. Surfing was part of their DNA. Laini going with
the flow along with her brothers.
Here's Christopher zipping by a really young Kainalu Nichols.
I can look at this pic of Chris and remember talking with him. Offering him words of encouragement. He and his siblings loved being in that ocean. What kid doesn't love the waves and water? I knew they would continue to be one with the waves and the surfing lifestyle.
And then years later seeing him really start to get his surfing to a whole other level. Surfing in Nicaragua and PR. Chris had become quite the ripper. Like this pic above. This is legit. He's putting it all together here. This is in PR where he had a soulful session with his dad Andrew. Chris was a surfer.
My heart goes out to everyone who knew and loved him.
I lost touch with some of them, life has a way of doing that. People go their separate ways, take on new roles and positions. But
know that you are all in my thoughts and prayers. I never met his girlfriend Ashlyn, but it sounds like the two of you really hit it off and were so happy together. There's some solace in knowing that you (Ashlyn) made Chris very happy.
My deepest condolences to his immediate family, especially Laini, Johnny, Andrew, and Carrie Kellar. The whole Kellar family, grandparents, aunts, and uncles. You all made a difference in his life.
And his other family the Nelsons, Ginger and his birth parents Keith and Cheryl. And to all his friends that he made from all the places he's lived, worked, and surfed. Love and respect to you all. This is one of the hardest Blogs I've ever had to write.
Not since the passing of Molly, have we ever lost one of the kids from Surf Family Robinson. I'd like to think that Molly has somehow connected with Chris, and together they will watch over those that were left behind. And maybe go for a surf. You know, where the waves are "perfect."
SURFING, COMMUNITY, and LOVE.
There will be a paddle for Chris in the summer.
Because Chris was a surfer.
"SURFING HEALS ALL WOUNDS!"
This week's Ed's corner pic is from March 9th, 2008. It's a photo of Sam Vokey! And that's a great looking wave there Sam! I know that Ed's lens had no filters. If you caught a good wave? He was pulling the trigger. Another fun winter day at the Wall.
Photo by Ed O'Connell
*Click the photo above to see a larger version of Ed's Pic.
Now for Some Local and National News
This is a photo of MARS. It was shot with a 4K camera. The Rover PERSERVERANCE also recorded the first ever audio tracks from MARS. It's all fascinating stuff from NASA. It won't be long before they have a man on MARS. Imagine being the first human being walk on the Red Planet. It's all coming.
Speaking of human beings doing the "First Evers". TB 12 caught a little flak from his boat outing last week after his Super Bowl Victory. He actually tossed the Lombardi
trophy from his boat to the boat behind him. That freaked a few people out including his young daughter who screamed "NOOO DADDY!"
I thought this was a clever and funny meme. We all need to lighten up. But I did ask what would have happened if they actually dropped the Super Bowl Trophy into the water? I guess we'll never know the answer to that one.
Speaking of GOATS. Poor Tiger has had the worse luck with motor vehicles. And his bad back...this is going to set him back a little. I'm just happy that he wasn't impaired. Though he could have been speeding or distracted. On his phone maybe texting? I don't know, but I truly wish him a speedy recovery.
This is the photo of his wrecked vehicle. Praying for you Tiger.
Then just when you thought you'd seen and heard it all...this!
Gaga put out a $500,000 reward. Return the dogs no questions asked.
I guess the dogs Gustavo and Koji have their own Instagram pages. They must be smart dogs.
I just heard she got her dogs back. They need to get those guys who shot the poor dog walker Ryan Fischer. That can't stand.
My dog Patch sitting in my chair after hearing the news of the Lady GaGa's dogs being returned. I'm a dog person. I don't like hearing stories of dogs being hurt or abducted.
It's a given that Patch has free reign of the house furniture.
All is calm again. Lady Gaga's got her dogs back. Silent Night.
Wait, all is not calm in celebrity-ville. Say it ain't so. Kanye and Kim are breaking up. Maybe his failed presidential run was the final straw. Or his strange attraction to 45? Who really cares?
Something tells me they will be OK. But just in case, keep them in your thoughts and prayers. I'm sure 45 has been on the phone with Kanye talking him off the ledge.
KSM Photoshop of the Week
You know, I am not surprised that Khaliddy would end up a dog napper. Unless this was before he became a terrorist. It's hard to tell when I use the same pic every week. Look at Ole KSM creeping into someone's house trying to dognap a dog. Good thing these two housewives were all over this caper. They're about to sick CHOMPER on his dognapping ass. Go on GIT!
And so my friends, please take advantage of this weekly photo shop of the mastermind who planned 9-11 and resulted in the deaths of 3,000 innocent civilians by KSM (Khalid Sheik Mohammed).
*Note to self -must pick up a case of Dog Bones
Home Depot this week.
Ralph and Richie. Yes I'm supporting Richie. He's my friend and more importantly, he's a brother Marine. And that my friends goes deeper than any political party. Richie will make a Great Selectman in our town. I'm also voting for Jim Waddell.
I'd ask that you vote for them too if you live in Hampton.
This pic below is connected to last week's story of my near drowning. This is Jay Wilbur and Jeff Crawford. Jay is the one who swam out to save me on December 26th, 1967. Jeff and I have been in touch every year since the mid 60's. Jay is coming to Cape Ann this summer and we are all going to meet up.
The good news is they both still surf.
HAPPY HEAVENLY 71st BIRTHDAY Joe Somogyi 3-2-21!
HEAL QUICKLY Tony Berardini on the new Hip Surgery!
HAPPY ANNIVERSARY 2-23-21 to John and Judith Rastl!
CONGRATS to Mr and Mrs Corey McCarthy!
CONGRATS to Kai Zola for an excellent SWIM Season breaking school records!
CONGRATS to Michael
Kirby's undefeated Wrestling Season!
PLEASE Keep 90 yr old Chuck Dreyer (Kim Grondin's dad)
in your thoughts and prayers as he recovers from surgery.
PLEASE Keep longtime NH Surfer Greg Smith in your Prayers.
PLEASE Keep local Surfer/Musician Pete Kowalski in your thoughts and prayers throughout the year.
Support ALL The photographers who contribute to
Ralph's Pic Of The Week every week for the last 16 years.
** BUY a HIGH RES Photo
from any of the weeks on RPOTW.
my friends... Surfing Heals All Wounds.
Pray for Surf. Pray for Peace. Surf For Fun.