Carrier of the Skiing Bug
For the first half-dozen years after he lurched through college, John Tipping 2nd was still deciding what he wanted out of a career. But he always knew what he wanted out of a weekend: biking and skiing. Especially skiing.
The four Tipping children — John was the third, and the only boy — were half-grown when their father, John, bought a cabin at Lake Placid. As one February vacation followed another, the son outgrew the father's intermediate slopes and moved to expert runs.
Six years ago, Mr. Tipping found the career he wanted. At the suggestion of his father, a retired firefighter, he joined the New York Fire Department and was assigned to Engine Company 54, Ladder Company 4. "He matured as a person when he was in the Fire Department," his father said.
Firefighter Tipping, 33, also moved from skis to a snowboard. Last winter he enticed his father, who had lost the skiing bug, to join him in Vermont. Two John Tippings, the younger mastering his snowboard, the older getting the rust out of his turns, were back on the intermediate runs. "I got my enthusiasm back," the father said. On Thanksgiving, the Tipping family lit a candle for their son, brother, uncle and cousin. And the older John Tipping made plans to buy new skis.
Profile published in THE NEW YORK TIMES on November 30, 2001.