Douglas Dirk Anderson, the co-creator and co-owner of Loki Gear passed away on 8/31/2019 going 80 feet off a cliff while backcountry motorcycling on Bangs Canyon above Grand Junction, Colorado.
Loki Co-Founder Dirk - The most heroic person we ever knew.
Dirk was born June 18, 1965 in Lincoln, Nebraska to Douglas Hawley Anderson and Janice Elaine Schnell.
Dirk was raised until the age of 14 in Carbondale and Glenwood Springs, Colorado.
He exemplified the best quality’s any man could ever hope to be blessed with. He was tall, handsome, athletic, intelligent, kind, caring and intensely compassionate to all.
He was a voracious reader his whole life, and read the entire Encyclopedia Britannica library before he was eight years old, just because he wanted to. Like his father he scored 165 on an IQ test, making him a literal genius, and it showed.
He was a talented athlete at a very young age. He learned to ski at three, learned to ride motorcycle at seven. He was skilled in technical and long distance Trials Motorcycle riding in the late 70’s and early 80’s. He set aside his passion for riding serious terrain on motorcycles while raising his family. He dreamed of riding again later in life. Dirk played on a 14 year old soccer league in Carbondale when he was only seven.
In 1978 the Anderson Family moved to Grand Junction, Colorado. The family now included his seven year younger Down Syndrome brother Jared Joshua Anderson born 8/7/1972 and nine year younger Seth Isaiah Anderson born 8/22/1974.
He had a hard time adjusting to the new town but he soon met life long friends and the love of his life Theresa Jill Neitzert Anderson who he later married for thirty years and had a loving family with two beautiful daughters Acadia Mae Anderson (Wilson) and Cierra Hope Anderson with Grandchild Valla Mae Wilson and a Grandson on the way.
He was not a fan of high school culture. He was a defender of underdogs from school bullies. He had intense hand-eye coordination and mastered arcade games, once winning Colorado state championship for “Stargate Defender” playing for 17 hours straight.
He was a natural athlete and was star player number 32 on the Central High School Basketball team. He played saxophone and was a solo vocalist representing the Grand Valley. Dirk was offered full ride scholarships for singing and for basketball.
Dirk was a tremendous golfer. He learned from his father Doug Anderson as early as skiing. He grew up playing and was on the high school team. He won long drive competitions. He played annual golf tournaments with his father and friends for his whole life. The father son team won two-man best ball tournaments, including one that Craig Stadler the “Walrus” had also won.
Instead of going straight after high school to college Dirk wanted to travel and spent a gap year traveling and working. He soon entered into the medical field after earning an associates degree to become an ex-ray technician. He spent his first year of radiology work in Sarasota Florida.
He would later turn his patient care advocacy focused medical career to help the greater community in ways that few can truly appreciate. He rose from being a tech, to be the manager for the Cat Scan department, then the entire diagnostic program, then ushered in a new era of electric records keeping for diagnostic and then the entire hospital.
He helped Saint Mary’s be recognized as one of the top three hospitals to implement “paperless” records keeping, while convincing area health care providers to help patients across the system more efficiently. He cared, and acted on his passion for others with his work.
Dirk moved back to Grand Junction in September 1990 having missed the mountain and desert scenery of Colorado. Dirk took his then sixteen year old brother to climb the fourteen thousand foot Mount Sneffels. This experience inspired Dirk to invent and later patent and Co-own the outdoor business Loki Outerwear. The brothers also vowed to climb all of the 58 peaks over 14,000’ together. The now famous goal of climbing all the “14ers.” Along the 29 years Dirk also climbed 23,800’ Aconcagua in Argentina, 20,320’ Denali in Alaska, Rainer, Grand Teton, Whitney, 80 mile high alpine climb of Gannett Peak in the Wind River Mountains. He self taught himself to rock climb hard 5’11 routes and intense high alpine climbs.
Dirk was inspired by mountains and travel. He took our humble family on the greatest adventures that few would dream possible in a lifetime. He had been to every state in the US but Arkansas. He went to Europe many times, South America and Asia. His missions were to learn more about the world and share the experience with loved ones.
Through Dirk’s persistent business acumen, work in health care and inventions with Loki he brought our family into a sustainable economic status. His purpose of financial success was not for personal gain but to care for his family’s long term well-being and for others in need.
On August 30, 2019, One week after completing his goal of climbing the Colorado 14ers with his younger brother Seth, Dirk went on what he intended to be a backcountry motorcycle ride. Dirk fell down an eighty foot cliff in Bangs Canyon above Grand Junction. He survived the initial fall but quickly succumbed to internal injury’s.
Dirk, We owe Dirk the highest honor and reverence and are ever thankful to have had such a truly bold and heroic man in our lives. Long live the Dirk. Douglas Dirk Anderson
More About Dirk:
Dirk the Wise;
Dad said when Dirk was born he came out eyes wide open survey in the room like he was studying. He read as much as he could his whole life but he rarely took any one opinion or quote as an authoritative statement for him or to others.
He challenged many people’s notions about life and society but he learned not to try to change people, that is for them to do and few have the desire or capability to change their thoughts or way of life. We are made who we are. Instead he would engage people with his own brand of bravado, humor and a realness of character that was easily felt.
When Dirk and I went to climb the last 14er together Dirk wanted take things slower and enjoy the moment. We camped above Creede, Colorado on a meadow and hung out most of the day between motorcycle rides.
We always talked about deep subjects, We wanted to try to solve the world’s problems. We know that can’t really be done.
I felt something strong emanate from him as he spoke about this; Dirk always searched for meaning in life. He said he felt like he had distilled the meaning of life into a few simple concept. The first and most important universal to life is that everything has the desire and the innate right to pursue happiness. The second is that everything has the desire and innate right to defend that pursuit of happiness. But really there is a third thought that is the key. We should focus on creating happiness for others.
Love from strength, not weakness is the best remedy. Fear is the heart of most ills in the world and are a waste of emotion. We ultimately fear death, and yet we can not stop it, so we should instead just be our best for others. I think everyone/ everything knows this deep down, but I don’t mind being reminded. It is easy to feel fear, it takes strength, not anger to over come fear.
He said he figured out that instead of poking at folks who are consumed with fear and worried about defending themselves from ultimately death which is inevitable, what really works is to instead share the strength of love while we can to make life better while we are alive. He said he was helping our mother by taking her in and loving big on her even when and especially when she would start to let fear and loss put dark clouds in her thoughts and emotions.
Surround your loved ones, friends, acquaintances and strangers with a strong love, a love strong enough to overcome fear itself.
— Dirk the Fun!
Dirk’s friend Mark Walrath came in crying at having also lost a hero in his life. A lot of people come in and want a hug and to share their pain of loss. I cried with him.
We talked some more and I said I was nervous about talking about Dirk this Saturday. I have so much I could say it would take hours and it needs to be five minutes.
Mark came around and he said, “Dirk lived the life that most people aspire to live to, and often don’t.”
Mark said “you know what is crazy? I remember we had a houseboat on Lake Powell with a sewer system issue. We were covered in shit, and Dirk made it one of the funniest, most joyous memories I’ve ever had.”
Dirk made suffering a joy. He would call or bust in the door and would say, “we’re going to climb this huge mountain, or hike 100 miles or travel to some other continent. We would be like, are you serious? Yes. He was, and we went, and all the fear we had dissolved the minute we set out the door because Dirk would plan the hell out of it, and was beside us, cheering, laughing, joking and encouraging the whole way.
Dirk was like Jim Carey before anyone heard of Jim Carey. He would turn a phrase to bust you up, but even better he would contort his body into the goofiest poses and immolate whatever he wanted and make you feel exactly how he wanted you to feel. He could make you laugh so hard you would cry, or maybe even pee yourself!
If you didn’t have a Dirk to challenge you, to push you to face your fears and make you suffer up a hill or down a long city sidewalk, then at the same time make you feel like laughing, crying and feel like a champion at the end, even if you barely survived, you should get yourself a Dirk. And if you can’t be a Dirk for those around you.
I’m crying, I’m going to cry, but when I’m gripped by fear or loss, I'm going to let that be my trigger to try to be brave and joyous like Dirk.
Gratitude for what I had is keeping me sane. I know we will all be sad for losing Dirk, I’m crying right now, but I won’t forget how happy and fun he made life while he could.
Thank you Dirk, and now you all around me for giving my life purpose, joy and why not have fun, even when we are going through the hard shit.
Carry on brother. —
Dirk Motorcycle Skills
Dirk said he “felt alive on the bike again...”
He called it his “scooter.” He said “I feel like I’m flying, in fact, I am flying Seth.” He said he loved trials moves up and over techy rocks, picking through baby-head boulders and chunder, and hauling ass to until the trail gets interesting.
John Boggs Senior said he saw Dirk do the single most amazing thing he’d ever seen on a motorcycle.
They were riding Cisco Road nearing Dewey bridge on the way to Moab. They got a little close and somehow Dirks handlebar got bumped.
His front wheel turned and the game was on. The bike flipped end-over-end and side-to-side multiple times going from 70 miles an hour down to zero. Dirk jumped all over the bike like a high speed cat until he grinding to a halt gripping the left handle bar to a stop.
He burned his hand on the muffler, otherwise not a scratch. They got back on and kept riding - hardly breathing heavy.
Dirk had next to no fear and didn’t let the past ruin his future. Just like we are trying to do.
Douglas Dirk Anderson — More of Dirk’s full life Hunting, Music lover (singer and musician), Dancing;
Dirk was a life long hunter. He felt as natural predators it is part of an honest life to know what it means and how it feels to take life to further your own. He went with family and friends and enjoyed the experience. He studied the terrain and habits of animals and set up successful strategies to get close enough to do it right. Most seasons he brought home cow elk preferring the the meat over the trophy.
Dirk loved music. All music. Early on he was into Led Zeppelin, AC/DC, Van Halen. He said the Beatles tapped into the universe and brought it to sound, sometimes with a message. Tenacious D was his theme music for climbing Denali, and continued to be his favorite “don’t fall asleep while driving music. Later in life he loved what he called melancholy singer song writer musicians. He got free tickets to Amos Lee the night before his fateful ride. “Window Rolled Down” seems to relate to the next day.
Dirk could dance. At three years old he got up on the tables at Sunlight ski resort and danced somewhat like Michael Jackson and his younger days and the whole place lit up and cheered him on and he relish dinner and kept dancing it’s one of my favorite stories about Dirk from before I knew him.
Later in life he visited his friend John, Phylis, Johnny, Heather and Stephen of the Boggs Family in Florida. Johnny and Dirk went to a nightclub and they saw him dancing and they paid him to get up on stage and dance to keep everybody moving. Dirk just showed up and they got him up there and he killed it.
He loved everyone else’s dancing too, maybe we could all gather and dance for Dirk?
Douglas Dirk Anderson —
Dirk’s Music I recall him enjoying related to his memorial-