John Chase Leaves Us; West Hollywood Urban Designer, Dear Friend

Frances Anderton -- with my dear friend, John Chase
John Chase and me; John, as usual, cuts a dash

I write with immense sadness about another untimely death in the LA architecture community.  Last Friday we lost John Chase, dearest friend to me and many others; brilliant writer, outrageous wit, dandy (as you can see from this photo); and secret weapon in West Hollywood, where, as urban designer, he was responsible for nurturing urbane and adventurous real estate development. He died suddenly, and unexpectedly, and I am still too shocked to accept that he is gone or to yet put feelings into words. Suffice it to say that John, aged 57, raised in South Pasadena, was one of LA’s most unique and talented sons.  He leaves behind the love of his life, his spouse, Jonathan Cowan; his beloved sister, Laura, two nephews, Alec and Oliver, and a niece, Eleanor; his goddaughter, Summer (my little girl), and many, many adoring friends. More to come as the words form. We will air a tribute to John on today’s DnA and you can read Christopher Hawthorne’s LA Times obituary and some wonderful remembrances by Alissa Walker and many other admirers here: Curbed LA, LA Observed, Architect’s Newspaper. A public memorial will be held 4 p.m. Aug. 24 at Fiesta Hall in West Hollywood’s Plummer Park. Attendees must “dress as if John picked out your outfit (bright & festive).”