Just before sunrise, on Monday, October 26, the FD Class lost one of the most senior members as Jupp Wanders (82) from Germany passed away.
Never again GER 139
Jupp was a crossborder sailor. Being raised in a small village about 10 miles from the Dutch-German border, he spoke the language of the neighbouring country fluently. He started sailing in the sixties on lakes that the Dutch took from the sea.
Jupp was a war child, working hard, being an architect, and living sober. As a small boy he already experienced the hardships of life, as a refugee, having to flee with his parents when the Allied forces entered Germany in 1945.
At the end of the sixties he bought his first Flying Dutchman. Soon he was a familiar face in the Dutch FD family. That way he became a member of the famous Royal Loosdrecht Yacht Club, the cradle of the Flying Dutchman.
That way he embodied the after war ideals of FD founding father Coen Gulcher: a boat that brings people together internationally, getting to know each others culture by sportmanship, friendship and socializing.
Jupp fitted in that ideal. Always being helpful and encouraging after your fifth capsize or a broken mast: “Come on, get up and let’s share a beer.”
Bringing sailors together.
Jupp did that when he invited the Dutch FD sailors to come to Germany and sail on a small lake near Xanten, half an hour from where he was living. It became a famous yearly event. And Jupp took care to transform his house into a Flying Dutchman hotel. Matresses and sleeping bags in all corners and in the living. Five star service: breakfast, royal dinner, a beer tap and an abundance of drinks.
Being in competition with Jupp often during races, I later became his crew. Together we were proving that two helmsmen in one FD can work out well, as long as one of them is the captain.
That way Jupp became a life long friend.
Even in winter we went for the water. On frozen surface, on our skates, doing tours of 80 kilometres on canals in the famous Dutch windmill area.
No Jupp at the windward mark anymore.
Makes the horizon a little empy.
Let’s watch the waves, cherish the warm memorie. Let’s stick to Jupp’s all time mottos: “Come, keep your head in the wind.”
Paul de Schipper
Photo: Caroline Kramer (Loosdrecht)