Oh my, I'm so sorry hear of John's passing. My first exposure to real retriever training was at a John Cavanaugh training day in PA some 15 years ago.
I soon became obsessed beyond recovery.
It was also a sad day when John left field trials some years ago.
I met John at the first Mike Lardy workshop I attended and was immediately impressed with his intensity, his thoughtful questions and his willingness to share information. I recall that he left the Lardy workshop every day and traveled to nearby grounds to continue training until dark. I regret that he left the game before I jumped in with both feet and wish I'd had the opportunity to know him better.
When I purchased my first labrador, I had the good fortune of being able to train with John. I was fortunate to see a lot of nice Field Trial Dogs in the groups, and I learned so much about the fine art of manning a gun station. John certainly was generous in sharing training information and I will always be grateful for his help.
My best memories will be seeing Bird Perfect - "Rocky" or Max Millenium - "Max" quartering on crispy November mornings hunting pheasants with John behind them. Those were the best of times.....
My first time to meet john was at a Qual somewhere in the East. He was behind me on the next holding blind . After I completed my walk of shame to pick the dog up John suggested to me as he went to line.
" Next time try to get your dog to look at the marks before you call for them "
Fast forward a few years and Johm and I were in a high level meeting on opposite sides of the issue.
John and I exchange glances and he asks " how's that dog doing - is it marking better "
Of course that dog was gone but it broke the ice.
He was an excellent golfer and was on Stetson university team. I believe he also flew a lot after getting out of dogs.
We started together in the mid 80's in Tampa.
John had a yellow show dog Sunny. Slow as slow could be. You can imagine how that aggravated him. I still have a ribbon or two where he would take my dog up to joes or dicks and run him just so he wouldn't have to stay home.
We hunted, fished, trained and traveled to trials together for some time until his employer, Chubb Ins sent him to Milan Italy to open a European subsidiary. Cindy finished law school and joined him. He was over there about 3 years and then came back and worked in NJ but lived in PA.
Everything he did was high intensity. I often thought of how far he came in the dog world and how much he shared.
I believe Cindy is still practicing law in the Easton area.
Condolences to his family and friends.