Turning Archive 2004

Steve Blenk is gone *PIC*

Ellis Walentine
>I received the terrible news today that Steve Blenk, a dear friend of mine and former contributing editor at AW, more recently with Woodworker's Journal, was killed in a freak accident on Hwy. 101 in Washington on Wednesday, when a dump truck swerved into his lane and hit his pickup head-on. Steve's son sustained minor injuries in the crash.

Steve was active in many of my early online ventures, including our official woodturning chat room at AOL back in the mid-90s. His chats were always well attended and lively, mostly due to Steve's quick wit and exhaustive knowledge of turning.

Some of you may also recall one of Steve's greatest claims to fame, when in 1996 he and Stuart Mortimer of the UK turned the world's largest bowl over the course of three American Woodworker shows. The sitka spruce monster began as a 2 1/2 *ton* blank and netted out as a 7'-9 3/4" dia. natural edged bowl.

He was a production turner and a brilliant man. It is such a shame to see his life cut short in this tragic and senseless way. It is a very sad day for the turning community. Please say a little prayer for Steve's wife and family.

Ellis Walentine, Host

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