Obituary of John Franklin Morris, Jr.
John Franklin Morris, Jr.
John died unexpectedly on December 23, 2019 at Sutter Roseville Hospital following a severe head injury. He was 79 and had lived in Grass Valley since 2001.
John was born in Burbank, Ca. on September 22, 1940. He grew up in the San Fernando Valley when it was still very rural; for a boy with a bike, the opportunities to roam and explore seemed endless. He graduated from UCLA and spent most of his working life as an electronic engineer in Southern California. After retiring from engineering he went back to school and earned a teaching credential. He discovered that he very much enjoyed his adult education students, and he was a very good teacher. Those who knew him will remember his stories of teaching students from many countries as well as county jail inmates.
John met and married his wife Cheryl in 1970. They enjoyed almost 50 years of visiting national parks and scenic places in the United States and Canada. He especially loved the Eastern Sierra. Hiking, photography, and eating well were always highlights of their annual stay at Woods Lodge in the Mammoth Lakes Basin.
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Some of John’s happiest years were spent in Grass Valley after retirement. He loved the beauty of the foothills and mountains and the strong sense of community. He served on the Nevada County Cemetery Board for six years and was active in the Nevada County Amateur Radio Club (call sign W6EXX.) He enjoyed his years as a volunteer teacher at the Gold Country Computer Learning Center and the Collaborative Technology Center at Madelyn Helling Library.
His friends and family will miss his dry humor, the gleam in his eye when he said something outrageous with a perfectly straight face, and his curiosity about anything and everything that crossed his path. He was a “typical engineer” with an atypical interest in other human beings. There was no problem, large or small, that didn’t have a solution if he worked at it long enough and, of course, used the proper tool. If that involved a trip to the hardware store, all the better.
John was predeceased by his parents and brother. He is survived by his wife Cheryl; sister in law Jean Lehman; and niece Barbara Lehman, along with her husband Chris Loar and their son, Micah Lehman-Loar. John would have been very grateful to Barbara for her presence and comfort to Cheryl during the week of his death.
An informal memorial gathering is planned for the summer of 2020.
If desired, memorial donations can be made to Bear Yuba Land Trust, http://www.bylt.org, PO Box 1004, Grass Valley, CA 95945; The Food Bank of Nevada County, http://www.foodbankofnc.org, 578 Sutton Way #187, Grass Valley, CA 95945; or Nevada County Citizens for Choice, http://www.citizensforchoice.org, PO Box 3525, Grass Valley, CA 95945. Please write “in memory of John Morris” on the memo line if donating by check, or, in the case of Bear Yuba Land Trust, in the comment section if donating through the website.
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