KansasFest alumnus Howard Katz emailed us today with this sad news:

It is with heavy heart that I report that one of the Apple II’s notable personalities has passed away.

Joe Kohn of Shareware Solutions II died on Jan. 5th, 2010, following a battle with lung cancer. He was 62 years old and lived in Marin County, California.

Joe Kohn at KansasFest 1996.
Joe Kohn being roasted at KansasFest 1996.
Photo by Pat Kern.

Joe got to know many Apple II people when he was a sysop on The Source, and his interest in the Apple started to grow.  He became interested in writing about the II and was a regular contributor to the Apple IIGS Buyer’s Guide and then wrote for inCider/A+, most notably about shareware programs.  He published the Shareware Solutions II newsletter from 1993 through 1999, while running an online store for Apple shareware and freeware titles. He was active on several of the online services when they were still supporting the Apple II, including CompuServe, AOL, and Delphi.

An avid Apple II fan, Joe owned numerous Apple II computers, including the rare Mark Twain IIGS. Joe used his IIGS for all of his personal work, and it was his preferred machine for his online work.

In his later years, he was was president of the Marin Chapter of the California Native Plant Society, becoming an expert on native wildflowers and other California plants.

Burial will be in Marin County on Jan. 8th, and a memorial service will be held on Saturday.

Joe Kohn was a regular presence at KansasFest in the 1990s, making the drive each year from California to attend KFest as a presenter, vendor, roastee, and roaster. Although many KFesters had not seen him in years, he continued to make available many unique Apple II programs and publications. As a member of the community and as a friend, he will be missed.

UPDATE: Pat Kern has created this slideshow tribute in honor of Joe Kohn.