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Obituaries » John J Hannon

John J Hannon

August 30, 1927 - June 11, 2019

U.S. Veteran

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John Joseph Hannon lived a long, loving, and eventful life. He was born on August 30, 1927 to parents Thomas M. Hannon and Janet A. Hannon in Bishop, California, and he died at age 91 on June 11, 2019 in San Rafael, California.

After childhood, he attended Loyola High School in Los Angeles and in 1945 volunteered for the army and was offered a three-year enlistment in the European Theater. In Europe he served as co-editor of the Giessen Military Monitor, and was editor of The Wetzlar Review. He also served as an editor of the army’s “Stars and Stripes” newspaper. Promoted to staff sergeant, he worked as an historian, and ran an army education program in Germany.

While on holiday in Italy, John met Jeanette Evans of Chase, Kansas. She was working as a teacher for army dependents, in Hanau, Germany. The two soon became engaged, and traveled extensively in Europe together. In 1950 John and Jeanette returned to the United States, and were married.

In 1951 John attended the University of San Francisco. John graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in English, and not long after, began a career in the insurance business as an underwriter. John and Jeanette lived in the suburbs of Daly City, and Pacifica. John and Jeanette’s children are: Stephen born in 1952, Kathleen born in 1954, and Julia born in 1961. Tragically, Jeanette died a day after giving birth to Julia.

1967 John married Elizabeth Glynn of Boston. They lived in Novato, California, and had two children, John Jr. in 1969, and Rosemary in 1971. John went to work for Fireman’s Fund insurance in 1968, and in 1971 was promoted to Assistant VP of that company. In 1980 Elizabeth and John were divorced. In 1984 John left his position at Fireman’s Fund. From 1985 to 1989, John did consulting work, and attended classes at the University of San Francisco.

During the years 1990-2000, John traveled and wrote. He was a member of the Toastmaster’s Society
of San Francisco, and at one time its President. In 2000 John met Ruth Sempell and the two found that they shared a love of traveling and square dancing. For the next 19 years they enjoyed each other’s company with trips to Germany, Switzerland, Alaska. Costa Rica, Panama, and their many excursions to Yosemite and McCloud, California with their square dancing club, Buzzin’ Boots.

A gentleman and a gentle-man through and through, John possessed a nature both intellectual and kind.

John was preceded in death by his parents, his older brother Martin (Marty), and his twin sister,
Catherine Marie (Katy).
John is survived by his brothers, Michael Hannon and James Hannon. He is also survived by his children: Stephen Mark Hannon, Kathleen Marie Lewandowski, Julia Carol Mell, John Hannon Jr., and Rosemary Hannon and his grandchildren: Krista LaPointe, Cory Hannon, Ruby Hannon, Thomas Hannon, and Wyatt Hannon. He has two great-grandchildren: Ashton LaPointe and Mia Vides Hannon.

His survivors also include several nieces and nephews.
He is also survived by Ruth Sempell, his loving partner, and her family.

Published in San Francisco Chronicle on June 28, 2019