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John T. Gannon 1923-2015

Nov 12, 2015

Funeral service for John T. Gannon of Emmetsburg will be held Saturday, Nov. 14, at 10:30 a.m. at Holy Family Catholic Church in Emmetsburg. Burial will be in Calvary Cemetery, Pocahontas.

The family will greet friends from 4 to 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 13, at the Joyce Funeral Home in Emmetsburg. There will be a parish vigil service at 7:00 p.m.

John Thomas Gannon, 92, lived a full and joyful life. On Saturday, Nov. 7, 2015 at St. Mary’s Hospital in Rochester, MN, he was called to Heaven.

John was born Aug. 15, 1923 in Varina, IA to Thomas and Gladys Gannon. He was a 1941 graduate of Pocahontas Catholic High School and served in the Army Air Force under General Claire Chennault in China during World War II as a member of the Flying Tigers.

Following his military service, John attended Buena Vista College on the G.I. Bill, where he played football, ran track, and received his Bachelor’s in English in 1950. While in Storm Lake, he met his life-long partner Marjorie (Marge) Miller. They were united in marriage on Aug. 16, 1950 at Saint Joseph Cathedral in Sioux Falls, SD.

John and Marge began their married life in Des Moines, where John earned a Master’s degree in Education from Drake University. He then began his long career as an educator and school administrator – an English teacher and coach at Adair and Shenandoah High Schools, and superintendent at Rutland, Pilot Mound, South Hamilton (Stanhope and Jewell), Eagle Grove, and Emmetsburg school districts. During his tenure at South Hamilton, John completed doctoral studies at Columbia University in New York City and Iowa State University, while raising a young family of six. John retired in 1988 after 18 years at Emmetsburg Community Schools.

John was on the Iowa High School Athletic Association Board of Control for 10 years, the Board of Unified Iowa HS Activities Council, the State Advisory Board Title II, and numerous other education boards and associations. He was a member of Rotary Club International for 36 years, the Emmetsburg Economic Development Committee, the American Legion and VFW.

Of his many accomplishments, John was most proud of his family -his wife of 60 years and their six children. John will be remembered as a loving husband and father, a community leader, a dedicated educator, an avid golfer, a great story-teller, and a friend to many.

Left to cherish his memory are his children, Patricia Escue and husband Doug of Houston, TX, Michael Gannon and wife Maureen of Bellingham, WA, Kevin Gannon of Seattle, WA, Mary Kay Gannon and husband B.J. Larson of Mount Vernon, WA, Donna Connelly and husband Kevin of Danville, CA, and Robert Gannon of Emmetsburg.

John is preceded in death by his wife, Marge; his parents, Thomas and Gladys; two brothers, Francis Gannon and William Gannon; and his sister, Gwen Stokes.

Donations in honor of John may be made to the Emmetsburg Educational Foundation – Scholarship Fund and sent to Joyce Funeral Home, c/o John T. Gannon, 2302 23rd Street, Emmetsburg, Iowa 50536.

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