The Industry Mourns The Loss Of Erik Stafford

It is beyond words to have to write about the loss of Erik Stafford, who passed away suddenly this past week. Erik was only 48 years old, and leaves behind a wife and children. To many, he was not just a brilliant marketer and creative director but also a really good and caring friend.

Erik Stafford was the Creative Director at aimClear, who also was well known for his speaking slots at PubCon and other conferences. He made tons and tons of friends out of his colleagues and coworkers. From his aimClear bio “Erik met his wife Wendy on a blind date in college, and is still happily married 21 years later. Together, Erik and Wendy have co-created two amazingly wonderful (and occasionally infuriating) children named Rowan and Evan. Erik and his family live in the small town of Cape Coral, Florida. When he’s not working, he can usually be found floating in his pool, reading, journaling, or ensconced in his kitchen perfecting various ethnic dishes.”

There is a GoFundMe page you can donate to help support the family – please be generous.

The folks at aimClear wrote “With shattered hearts, we share devastating news that our Creative Director, Erik D Stafford has passed away.” aimClear closed yesterday to take the “time to grieve within our family,” the company said.

Here are some public tweets and messages from those who knew him:

Melissa Fach sent me this story and screenshot to post:

I first met Erik working for Isoosi, a long time ago. He was always kind, respectful and easy to talk to.

Years later he pitched to speak at Pubcon when I worked there. He was great; we spoke on the same panel and he was larger than life and so freaking smart. I told Brett we needed him all the time. I bugged him to pitch.

He was just sweet and kind and funny. Just kind of in shock. Sending you the last pic he sent me. He was just a joy all the time and someone you could go to for anything. I pray for his family and I know he is making God laugh in Heaven.

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Doc Sheldon sent this story:

Erik – you’ll be missed by many.

I didn’t know Erik as well as I’d have liked. I first met him when Ammon invited me to attend an Isoosi session, and Erik’s personality was captivating. He was genuine and open – characteristics that always appeal. And his lively sense of humor made him a pleasure to be around.

We only chatted privately a couple of times, once when he shared his advice on how to run a successful webcast/interview. “Make your guest feel at home” was his primary message, and that makes perfect sense, because it’s what he always did. I can’t imagine anyone not being at ease around him!

We’ve lost a treasure in Erik. His values and character benefited our industry and all who knew him. I can only imagine the sense of loss felt by his family, and my heart goes out to them.

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RIP Erik – you will be deeply missed.

Forum discussion at Twitter.

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