John William Heermans, age 93, left this world early Thursday morning, holding the hands of members of his loving family in Grand Junction, Colorado.
Mrs. Heermans was born in Jamaica, Queens, New York in 1924, the child of Dora and Guy Heermans. He graduated from Jamaica High School.
During World War II, he was a rear gunner and radioman of a torpedo bomber stationed on the aircraft carrier U.S.S. San Jacinto in the Western Pacific from 1944 - 1945. He was awarded five air medals, four with gold stars, the Distinguished Flying Cross and a Presidential Citation for his heroism and bravery. After his naval discharge, he joined the Army with the rank of 2nd Lieutenant SIGC, USAR and attended Clarkson College in upstate NY, receiving a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering.
While at Clarkson, he met his future wife, Audrey Vickers. They married in 1951, and over the years, raised five children, Jeffrey, Andrew, Alison, Stuart and Christopher, whom they inspired to be optimistic and successful in their lives.
He worked for 30 years at IBM in Poughkeepsie and Kingston, New York and in Boulder, Colorado as a Senior Engineer.
He was a member of many churches including St. Gregory's in Woodstock, NY, St. Mary Magdalene's in Boulder, CO and Church of the Nativity in Grand Junction, CO. His support and love never wavered for his family as it grew to over 40 souls, including 15 grandchildren, and 11 great grandchildren. It is true in more ways than one, that his generation was the greatest, most stoic and dedicated folks that ever lived. He will be missed by all and never forgotten.
In lieu of flowers, please make contributions to Church of the Nativity, Hospice or Habitat for Humanity.
A memorial service will be held on Friday, October 27, 2017 at Church of the Nativity at 10 O'Clock A.M. and a military service will take place at Veterans Memorial Cemetery of Western Colorado at 1 O'Clock P.M.
Charitable donations may be made to:
Church of the Nativity
2175 Boadway Road, Grand Junction CO 81507
Hope West Hospice
3090 North 12th Street, Grand Junction CO 81506
Habitat for Humanity of Mesa County
200 Grand Avenue #1011, Grand Junction CO 81501