Tuesday, February 8, 2022

RIP, John Roope

WE ARE SADDENED to hear of the passing of John Roope, a Second String Music Hall of Famer for sure. John was one of our first and best customers at the old location at Eighth and Washington, an excellent strummer and singer who loved to play the guitar and tell stories. John had a dry sense of humor and always had a kind word for us.

John Roope and Kevin Sullivan, Store Party

I hired him to perform in Washington Park maybe five years ago, and he was so excited to be there. You could see the joy and delight in his eyes and his voice as he played on a hot summer day in the shade.

John was head of Cheerful Home back during my reporter days, and later worked for DCFS. We had many discussions about "Welfare Deform" and challenges faced by low-income parents. He had a heart of gold. He loved to travel to his various conferences on his motorcycle and he had great stories about all the interesting and strange people he'd meet along the way.

Prayers for his wife, Sherry. She has been his rock for the past few years. John had been struggling with his health and it's been a while since I've seen him, as he moved to Rushville a few years ago. Sherry says John had a stroke last month and had to be hospitalized, and he died from Covid complications. It is heartbreaking to hear of another covid death so close to our musical community. Our most medically fragile are dying and the death toll is overwhelming.

John Roope and Connie Guthrie playing great music in Warren's lesson room!
John Roope and Connie Guthrie playing great music in Warren's lesson room!

We are celebrating our 11th anniversary this month, and I think fondly of those early days at our original location. John is prominent in those early recollections, as fuzzy as they may be today.

Rest in peace and ride on, John. I'll play a song or two for you this afternoon in guitar lessons and remember your friendship and support of Second String Music and Quincy music fondly.

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