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>Susan (Abbondanzo) and Jonathan Johnstone
This is a beautiful tribute to a very courageous young man who lived a remarkable life. Although we did not know him personally, we came to know John through the love of Linda and Tom and the endless stories they shared with us. It is comforting to know that although John's life was short, he lived it fully the way he wanted to. You are all in our hearts and prayers at this difficult time.
Keith and Kristina Chambers
Loss is painful, loss of a child even worse. Find peace in the wonderful memories you have.
Maria McBean
What a brilliant, gentle, and brave young man...a bright light gone out way too soon. Love, hugs, and prayers to Cynthia, Mary, and Big John.
Uncle Tom 'T Bone'
For me I so many memories, from mountain biking at Snowshoe, sunset flights in the Luscombe, waterskiing behind 'Miss Cynthia', hearing how the Braves were the best, teaching me the proper way to tune my skis, visits to KMS, pingpong at all hours, freezing my ass off in the Sprinter, summers in San Diego (paradise), visiting me at Hopkins, tennis in Old Town, grass skiing down bootlegger, dinners at Nacho Mama's, recycling everywhere we went, the endless Reggae music, powder skiing in Utah, telling me how 'out of shape' I was, but the fondest memory was the puppies. It was the gift I gave to John on Christmas Eve 1993. I will never forget how happy it made him feel as he unzipped the bag and 3 little heads popped out. I will truly miss my best friend and the precious times spent together. Without a doubt, if it was not for John showing me the way to persevere I would never had recovered from my injury. He will always be my inspiration to make it happen no matter what the adversity is in life. Thank you for being such a wonderful spiritual being to me. As John would say, 'I love you man'.
"Ant" Linda
One of my favorite memories of Little John was when he was younger and Tom and I were living in the condo in Bethesda. We had picked him up from school one Friday, so he could sleep over to go skiing at "White Tail" in the morning. The condo had two levels with a loft upstairs where John was sleeping. Around 4 AM I awoke to the sound of footsteps above. I went up and saw John awake and asked if he was ok, and he replied "oh yeah, I'm just so excited to be going skiing with Tom, I can't sleep".

It's hard to get past the pain of loss for a soul so precious, who was with us for such a short time. However, it does help to think about John's life and the light that he brought into the lives of all of his family and friends. Though he was taken from us way too soon, he made the world a much better place while he was with us. He will live on in my heart forever. I am so grateful that I had the chance to know this very special and unique young man. I also feel truly blessed that Mary, Big John, and LJ always welcomed me into their hearts and home. I appreciate that Tom and I got to spend so much time with John during the past 4 years as he battled this terrible disease. John continually lightened our lives each and every minute we spent with him. Cynthia was not only John's "magic pill", but ours too. From the moment she would arrive at the hospital, the whole mood would become brighter. Cynthia, we love you with all of our hearts and we will cherish you in our lives forever. Phil, I'd be hard pressed to find anyone who had a better 'best friend' then you. Thank you for being there throughout it all and thank you for being "silly" at the times we just needed "silly". Mary and Big John, I personally have never known two parents who were more loving, devoted, caring, nurturing, fun, and special as you both. John loved and adored you guys with all his heart. We too, love you all very much! May God bless you all at this difficult time.
Jamie,Michelle,Sam and Max Varipapa
We are close friends, like family to Tom and Linda Bryce. We did not know John personally but always heard fabulous things about him. Seeing this wonderful tribute and the beautiful things others have to say just confirms what an incredible person he is. We are sorry for your loss and will keep your family in our thoughts and prayers. Peace and Blessings.
Lisa Lettieri
LJ, Each of us has a fire in our heart for something and you found that fire at a very young age and kept it lit. Your spirit is a true inspiration to us all.

John and Mary โ€“ The happiness and joy LJ showed for his family and life would bring a smile to anyoneโ€™s face and is a testament to you. This is shown in the pictures of LJ through the years and reading his essays. Itโ€™s a beautiful thing to see how you all cherished each other.

Cynthia, what a remarkable woman you are. The love you and LJ shared is so lovely. Itโ€™s difficult to put into words, but LJ did it so well in his essay.

Please know that my family and I are thinking of you - Lisa
cousin Jim Grant
Sending love, and strength, and more love and more strength, to Cynthia, John Sr. and Mary, and to the many members of Little John's extensive and loving family.

I spent an hour viewing the Gallery images and was especially grateful to be able to "attend" the wedding via all of the Wedding Pictures! โ€” such a testament to Love and to Life, to Courage and to Resilience.

"I answer the heroic question 'Death, where is thy sting?' with 'It is here in my heart and mind and memories.' โ€ โ€” Maya Angelou

As one of the far-flung Stuart cousins (I now live in Canada), I so wish I had had the opportunity to know LJ as an adult.

*LOVE* to all! โ€” cousin Jim
Colleen Cassidy
I stumbled upon this by accident, but knew that once I saw the picture of "John, Sophie, and turtle" that this was the same kid I spent afternoons re-enacting flipper with. When you all moved from Alexandria, Va John sent me this very picture. I have very few memories of preschool but the few I have were with John. I know its been twenty years, but so much of my preschool memories are with him. I don't remember much, but what I do was with him. We re-enacted "flipper" after school, and I actually remember punching him in class (he told me to do so) and being sent to time out. I don't remember much else, but that I missed my good friend. I tried to look him up on facebook a few years back but found so many by the same name that I gave back, I wish I had tried harder. I'm sorry we weren't able to keep in touch as much as I had hoped over the years. My thoughts and prayers are with your family.
Michelle Villari
Prayers and love to all that know and love John. His approach to life will remain with all of us, always. We are all honored to have known and loved him. Cynthia and the Rust family, my thoughts and prayers are with you all. He is and always will be a truly amazing person.

Much love from myself and I am sure the rest of the KMS crew.
Chris Sestito
>The time that I have known John leads me to believe that he has lived more in his 24 years than most will or could in 100. I have never known someone as determined or accomplished in every part of life. I consider myself lucky to have known him and honored to have been a friend. My heart goes out to Cynthia and the rest of the Rust Family.

Chris
Joshua Mann
It just blows my mind that he is not with us anymore. Cynthia I am so so sorry for your loss. He will live on in all of us, and in our memories. I can remember when I played baseball with John when I was around 10 years old, that's 13 years ago. His nickname was Nails because he could hammer the ball out of the park. I'll never forget him. My thoughts are prayers are with you Mrs. Rust and the rest of the Rust family. John is still alive, in our hearts and in our minds. He will not be forgotten.
Kellyn Farrell
I am not really sure what to say. I have known John since elementary school, he was such an awesome person. My prayers go out to Cynthia and his family.
Ben Brothers
It's my sincere belief that one can not truley comprehend the beauty of life until they face adversity and hardship. Unfortunately one of the most peaceful and caring souls I have ever met had to endure extreme hardship the likes of which I can not fathom, yet I know that John passed away with a true understanding of just how blessed any of us are to grace this earth. Although he passed young it is my belief that John's experiences taught him more than anyone could hope to learn in a hundred years. He will live on in the souls of those that knew him and in a wife and family that are amazing.
The Nawrockis
Mary, John, & Cynthia, - LJ could have searched the world over and not found three more wonderful people to nourish, support, and cherish his brief and shining life. Our hearts and tears are with you at this sad time. Much love and peace - Susan & Mike
Tim Pinney
I never knew John personally but I knew that everyone loved him, and that tells me volumes about this man. Cynthia, Mr. And Mrs. Rust, I am truly sorry for your loss and my thoughts and prayers are with you.
Amy McAleese
Some of my best memories of John are from Elementary School! He was the fastest kid in the third grade and he was never without his Braves baseball cap. One time, in Mrs. Wines' class, i was talking with friends when we were supposed to be quiet. Mrs. Wines came in, angry and wanting to know who was talking; i was so scared and embarrassed to get in trouble and started turning red, my eyes tearing up. John was at my table that day and he saw how scared I looked. He raised his hand and took the blame for me! John was a truley good and compassionate person. I will miss him greatly. My love and thoughts are with you Cynthia and Rust Family.
Ashley Ford
Hey,
Im Not Really Sure What To Say...Im At A Loss For Words...May Peace Be With You...Cynthia, Stay Strong And Know There Are People Here To Support You.
The Mercers
From both Vermont and Virginia, we send our best to all John's family and friends. His love of life and sharing with others left many of us better people because we knew him. Let's all remember his good nature and let his example give new meaning and purpose to those he has left behind.
awnt mary
LJ, I just read your essays. Your words bring you fully back. I miss you bud.
Cynthia, nothing else could have expressed so well the amazing woman that you are and your capacity to love.