John Martin Voss
Jan. 5, 1939 – Aug. 10, 2016
John Martin Voss passed away August 10th, 2016 at his beloved Caples Lake Resort near Kirkwood, CA after a brief but courageous battle with gastric cancer.
John was born January 5th, 1939 in St Louis, MO to German immigrants Otto and Rosalie Voss. John attended Country Day School in St. Louis before moving on to college at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York where he earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mechanical engineering.
John fell in love with and married fellow Cornell student Grace McConnell Abbott in 1959.
In 1963 John took an engineering job at the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center (SLAC), where he worked until 1978.
John moved with the entire family to Switzerland for two years in 1966 while he worked at CERN (European Organization for Nuclear Research). While at SLAC, John was a key engineer on the SPEAR (Stanford Positron-Electron Asymmetric Ring), which led to the discovery of the “psi” particle and earned lead physicist Burton Richter a Nobel prize for physics in 1976.
In the 1970’s John was very involved with AYSO soccer and enjoyed taking his sons backpacking in the high Sierra.
John transitioned to the private sector in 1978 as a manufacturing manager in the medical group at Varian Associates where he worked until 1982.
In the fall of 1982 John made a major life changing decision and bought Caples Lake Resort near Kirkwood, California where he worked and resided on and off for the next 34 years. John also went back to work for SLAC in 1982, onsulting on various collider projects until his official retirement in 1995. But John’s main passion and focus from 1982 on was Caples Lake Resort, which provided an important outlet and focus for John’s legendary energy, drive, and engineering creativity. Countless guests came to love and admire John. The resort also provided a unique environment and opportunity for his sons and many other employees over the years to enjoy the incredible hiking, biking,
and skiing in the area.
“Papa John” derived tremendous joy from his 8 grandchildren, whether it was riding on the snow-cat at Caples Lake or skiing together at Kirkwood. In his spare time John enjoyed sailing on his boat in the San Francisco Bay and flying his plane down to Baja to spend time at his beach palapa.
John is survived by his sister Ellie Lindstedt, and his 4 sons: John, Rob, Joe and Mike.
Family and friends are invited to a celebration of John’s life at 2 PM on October 1 at Red Cliffs Lodge in Kirkwood.
In lieu of flowers or gifts, donations in John’s memory can be made to the Stanford Medicine Cancer Institute.