Happy Birthday to My Late Brother, John

I recently came across my mother’s memory book of my brother, John. It contains family photos, several letters from John she received in the months prior to his death, along with condolence cards and letters after he died in 1990. He was 46 at that time. He had been diagnosed with AIDS less than 2 years after going to Parkland Hospital in Dallas with what turned out to be pneumocystis pneumonia. He told us that the doctor said, “We have two medications to fight this disease. If these don’t work, you should know we will not resuscitate.” That was around 1988.

My brother, John, had both a Bachelor’s and Master’s degree in Italian from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and he also spoke French, Spanish, and German with an impressive degree of fluency. He lived in Italy for ten years and owned and operated a franchise of The British School, a private school focused on teaching English to Italians. I lived near John in Italy for 1 year right after receiving my Bachelor’s in 1975, and taught English to Italians at his school and then later at The British School in Milan.  We became very close that year together, and I will always treasure those memories. John remains one of the most well-read and well-traveled people I’ve ever met, he played the piano exceptionally well and had a wicked sense of humor. I loved him very much.

Here are pictures of him over the years.

From Mom’s Memory Book:


John as a baby


John as a Little Boy

john little

Sibling Photo in mid-1960s

family shot

John in Italy

john beach

John in Italy

john beach1

John, George, and Jim with Daddy, 1971

Thanksgiving, 1971

Family Christmas, 1987 or 1988

family christmas

Nephew Jim, Brother Sam, Nephew Hutch, and John

jim, sam, and john

Sister Leslie; Her Friend, Ricki; Ray and John

ray, les, ricki, and john

John and Jim, Brothers and Best Friends

john and JIm

John in 1989

john sick

I want to share these lovely photos today with family and any people who may have known John.  I know a few people will be very pleased to see their dear cousin, brother, or friend here on these pages. Seeing John from his earliest days to near his last is bittersweet, but also keeps his memory alive. That makes me happy.

One Comment Add yours

  1. Don Dodson says:

    Pig Brance Circle still has the plaque with his name on it.



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