We have finally been able to confirm the sad news that veteran crane and access salesman Joe Foot, owner of California based UpRight Scaffold North America has died.
He passed away on October 12th as a result of injuries from a road accident that occurred as he was being driven to a physical therapy appointment on October 9th – he never regained consciousness and was only 67.
Joe had been involved in another very bad road accident a few years earlier, in which he was lucky to have escaped with his life, but which inflicted serious spinal injuries and left him as an ‘incomplete quadriplegic’. Although he was confined to a wheelchair he had been making progress, gaining enough strength and co-ordination to be able to stand and even walk a short distance on his own. He is survived by his daughters Sasha and Alexandria, former partner Dawn and brother Jim.
Joe Foot was an out and out salesman and larger than life character, he came into the access business in 1995 when he joined Los Angeles based rental company Horizon High Reach, which had been acquired by Rick Stowe the owner of aerial lift manufacturer UpRight in1989. Foot was recruited to take Horizon into alloy tower sales and rental, he also became involved with its aviation maintenance staging business.
He left the Horizon/UpRight in 2003 and joined Coast Crane as a territory manager where he remained until 2010, when the company was acquired by Essex Crane. He began working on his own and set up his own company at the end of 2012 in the form of UpRight Scaffold North America, selling a version of Instant UpRight’s alloy tower system.
A tribute to him by the Bodega Bay Church said: “Joe was an outstanding musician and drummer. He played in bands most of his life. He was fun loving and hard working throughout his life. Although his previous accident robbed him of his mobility he would often say it was the best thing ever to happen to him. It caused him to draw closer to God and change his life for the better.
Joe played drums in the Bodega Bay Church band for nearly five years. Although he could not use his hands, we strapped his drumsticks to his wrists, and he was able to play very well. Over time he became the heartbeat of our Church band and was an amazing encouragement to all of us. Joe was known for his fun loving humour, infectious smile and later in life for his deep abiding faith his sincerity and encouragement will be sorely missed.”
It is true Joe Foot was a larger than life character, loud, funny with a can do - get on with it attitude, he had a raucous laugh and love him or hate him you could not ignore him. If he walked into a room you would often hear him – usually his laugh - before you saw him. He could be exasperating for anyone holding a long winded tedious meeting. His irreverent nature often came across like the disruptive boy in elementary school class – the class clown, which in such meetings was often appreciated by his colleagues. Ultimately he was an extremely hard worker, knew his subject inside out and delivered results, he was always fun and could light up a room.
The following video made just before his first accident shows him in action