Solar Story of John and Kimlin
On Sunday, July 29th, at 2 PM the community will come to RCNV to celebrate the life and contributions of our dear friend John Keith. Read his wife Kimlin’s letter and story about John and how he continues to still inspires others, ultimately helping install solar panels to the RCNV, a feat that he would be proud of.
Dear Friend of the Earth and the Sun,
I first met John Keith 40 years ago at the Resource Center for Nonviolence. He was on the Alternative Energy committee of People for a Nuclear Free Future. PNFF fought to keep the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant from going online. Within a year John and I were together, eventually marrying and raising our two children.
Perhaps you knew him. John was the smartest person I knew, a Renaissance man capable of so many things. He designed and built a solar hot water system for a friend and the office windows in the first RCNV building on Broadway. By profession he transitioned from photojournalism to computer engineering, while he continued to ponder better answers to our need for fossil fuels. We became the first in our neighborhood to get an electric car— a little GEM flatbed truck that topped out at 25 mph— and first to install a solar electric system linked into the power grid. Always curious, John discerned that the weak link in our solar PV system was that the inverter was only passively cooled. So, he designed a circuit board and created a plastic molding set up to make an active cooling system for these inverters. He got as far as designing a logo for “Reli-Cool” and getting 50 circuit boards printed when life intervened.
For 40 years, John and I have been supporters of the Resource Center for Nonviolence and its mission for a just and peaceful world. I am so glad the new remodeled building will meet the needs of the staff and the community into the future. John’s walnut desk graces one of the beautiful and accessible offices. It is the perfect hub for the activism we need now. At the grand opening, I learned from Jane Weed Pomerantz that the only thing left to do is install solar panels, which got me thinking:
What would John Keith do?
John would want the sun to power the work of the Resource Center! But eight years ago, John was diagnosed with early onset dementia. He died on December 21, 2017. In his honor, our children, Kaitlin and Dean, and I are creating a matching grant of $10,000 to get those photovoltaic panels up on the RCNV roof.
Will you help the sun shine in? All contributions are tax deductible and will go twice as far. Our goal is to completely fund and install the system by spring of 2018 when we will gather together to honor John and all of you who work for a better world. Please make as bright and large a gift as you can to the John Keith Solar Future Fund.
Thank you for honoring both our guy John Keith, and the important work of the Resource Center for Nonviolence.
Kimlin McDaniel Keith Jane Weed Pomerantz Gary Patton Pete Kennedy