First my deepest condolences to Kip's wife and family. He was loved and is missed by many.
I met Kip online about eight years ago and we quickly became friends. A few months later in 2000, he accepted my invitation to join our organization which was founded in 1992 for the purpose of heavy metal advocacy. In less than a year he took on the responsibilities of Forum Moderator and eventually became our most decorated member.
His bold sense of humor, incorrigible dedication and intense friendship were key in transforming the forum into what it is today. He epitomized every thing good about the organization with his honesty, his love of the music, and his loyalty to his friends. He had an undeniable and lovable presence that impacted more members than I can count. He was responsible for what's considered the WMA's high watermark when he founded Alliance Radio, fulfilling the organization's decade old dream of having an all metal feed.
Over the years our friendship grew to the point he was like a brother. Two years in a row, he flew all the way out to the East coast just to hang out for a couple days. Few people know it, but when he was here last Summer, he layed down the vocal tracks for the live version of the organization's anthem. In tribute to him, we will be releasing a video montage of photos from those days we spent together and the soundtrack will be the WMA's anthem with Kip on vocals.
His passing is an indescribably painful loss to me and many others. The organization has lost it's ultimate member, and worse yet, many of us have lost an irreplaceable friend that we loved dearly. He will always be missed and never be forgotten. We often signed off our correspondence with the WMA motto, "U&C!" (short for Unite & Conquer) And no other person I know did more to unite the WMA and conquer apathy among the subculture than Kip.
So Kip, rest in peace brother, I miss you... it is with tears and deep sorrow that I sign off one last time... U&C!