18 April 2017 Some very sad news in a message received this morning from Robbie Rutt.
It is with great sadness that I have to tell you of the passing of John Wootton. He passed away peacefully yesterday, Saturday, in the Hospice at Esher having battled for some time against leukaemia and additional complications, which of course did not help his cause.
It was his express wish that his funeral should be very private and as a result when it is arranged only the very immediate family will be in attendance.
John joined me as a member of 'my team' on the 'Reina' back on June 29th 1971, and immediately established himself as a notable member of the team. His gregarious character endeared him to everyone, fellow officers and passengers alike and his exceptional conception of how to look after the travelling public lead him on, after the end of Union Castle in 1977, to become one of the most influential and highly respected employees of Travcoa, the Travel Corporation of America, regarded by all in the travel industry as the 'crème de la crème'. We shall miss him terribly but will reflect on the many many happy hours we had working together and to know how privileged we all were to have him enter our lives.
Derby night on the 'Reina del Mar' November 1973 on the way from England to South Africa.