John Hooten, Jr., longtime coach at Vesper Boat Club and a four-time U.S. National Team coach, passed away on March 5th after falling out of his single on Lake Natoma. He was 66.
Hooten, a Granite Bay, California-resident, coached at Vesper for many years, helping 32 rowers make the national team and 18 reach the Olympic Games, including his future wife, Susan Morgan. He served on the women’s national team coaching staff from 1976-79, including at the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal where women rowed at the Olympics for the first time.
In addition to his coaching, Hooten also was known for his rowing cartoons that appeared in various rowing publications throughout the years. Still a competitive masters rower, Hooten was training for an upcoming race when the incident occurred.
In addition to his continued involvement in rowing, Hooten began coaching the Johnson Ranch Barracudas youth swim club in Roseville, Calif., in 2005, and was a volunteer with the Boy Scouts of America.