Words by Mike | Celebration of a Life Well Lived | Linda D. Adams | November 4, 1949 – February 22, 2024

Hello everyone, I’m Mike Wright. I’m here today to talk about my good
friend Linda Adams, a truly amazing woman who made an impact on
everyone she met. I have a lot of Linda and Martyn stories, but today I
promised Laura I would stick to Linda the Racing Sailboat Skipper.

A little history on me. Back in 1993 for Father’s Day, my 6-month-old son
gave me plans to build a Farrier F-25A trimaran from scratch. A Farrier
Trimaran is a three hulled folding sailboat (multihull) that promised to be
easy to sail but still fast. As I started building, I learned about a local
sailing club, Northwest Multihull Association, that was a collection of
multihull builders and sailors. It was there that I met several lifelong
friends like Wayne and Ann, Scott, David, Vince, so many others and, of
course, Martyn and Linda.

As I got close to finishing the boat, being around folks in the club and
hearing the stories of “hair on fire” sailing, I thought it might be a good
idea to get more sailing experience. And by experience, I mean racing,
because why go sailing if you are not going to go racing?

Sailboat racing can be described as a bunch of boys, with expensive toys,
playing a game of chicken on a cold windy day when most sane folks stay
home. All for the glory of winning a $10 particle board trophy. To us, it’s
serious stuff with serious boats with names like Origami, Dangeraux,
Redshift, Blue Lightning, Almond Joy, Dragonfly, Cheekee Monkee,
Makika, Danger Zone, Bad Kitty, and Cat Sass, among others.

I started crewing with Wayne on Almond Joy when in the early 2000s
during Winter Vashon, a typical cold windless race, and we heard this
giggling across the water from a new boat in the fleet, the F-27 trimaran
Cuttlefish. We wondered “What the hell is a Cuttlefish, and why are they
giggling during a serious sailboat race?” They also wore weird foul
weather gear (RufDuck) that we later learned they sold through their
company. That was my introduction to Martyn and Linda. Not long after I
started crewing for them on Cuttlefish, then Ruff Duck, and finally Moxie.

I want to focus on our time on Cuttlefish, as this was the boat I believe
was closest to Linda’s heart. On Cuttlefish like most other boats, the
skipper is usually the primary driver and overall decision maker. If Linda
was on the boat, Linda was the skipper. Martyn and I provided the
muscle, occasionally drove, but Linda provided the skill.

In my opinion, a good driver has the ability to put the boat in the correct
position, at the correct speed, and at the correct time. Think about that,
its position, speed, and time simultaneously, I freely admit I’m not very
good at it. I don’t know if it was Linda’s growing up with horses, racing
rally cars or flying aerobatic airplanes, but of all the people I have sailed
with, she was the best, hands down, at mastering those skills. She also
had this amazing relationship with Cuttlefish, they were connected, she
felt what the boat needed far before Martyn and I would notice, and she
talked numerous times about how Cuttlefish spoke to her.

I don’t want you to think Linda was all woo-woo touchy feely. She was
competitive and wanted to win. Linda never backed down or was
intimidated by other skippers or boats. I remember one Semiahmoo
Regatta, Linda had us in perfect position at the starting line, when Blue
Lightning, came barging in, trying to force their way between us and the
committee boat. Remember what I said earlier about chicken? Well, Linda
headed the boat up, forcing Blue Lightening to crash tack in order to miss
the committee boat. All the while saying, “I bet he won’t try that again.”
Linda wanted to win.

Skippers come in all sizes, shapes and personalities. I have found that in
challenging conditions the really good ones, are calm, communication
clearly and always look out for their crew. Linda was a really good
skipper.

So, when I think of Linda the sailor, I always go back to the last Round
County we did on Cuttlefish. The wind was up, gusting 40 knots. It was so
windy the ferries weren’t running or as Mikey says, it was crying for
mommy weather. We were overpowered and needed to beam reach (the most dangerous point of sail on a multihull) to lay the finish. Linda was on
the helm, a big smile on her face, Martyn and me trimming, float down,
going fast, 100% confident she had it and we would be ok. Man, she liked
to go fast. After finishing we headed into Peavine Pass where she stood
up, dropped the helm and told us she was going down to take a nap, and
we had the boat.

These days I don’t race sailboats anymore, instead I fish the same waters
we used to race in. Every time I go through Peavine Pass I think of Linda,
and as I said to her recently, I know where to find her, she is out on the
water, with the wind up, float down, going fast.

Rest easy Linda, we love you, we got the boat.

Mike Wright
3/9/2024

1 thought on “Words by Mike | Celebration of a Life Well Lived | Linda D. Adams | November 4, 1949 – February 22, 2024”

  1. Thank you Mike, that is a wonderful remembrance of Linda. She was loved, and will be missed, by all of us in our Multihull Club. The memorial at Shelter Bay Community Club where you spoke was amazing; the flower arrangements by a friend (and helpers I assume), the large family holograms by her talented son, an engaging MC by her eloquent daughter, the big screen display of her life events, a huge spread of of fabulous cookies from neighbors and food from many of the ~130 attendees, and lastly a loving tribute by Martyn. It was a heart warming celebration of a life incredibly well lived. Sail on Linda, we will remember you.

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