I knew John as a classmate when we both attended St. Vincent DePaul Seminary in Lemont. We were just 13 years old but still had sincere hopes of serving our fellow human beings by being Catholic priests. I don't think John's desire to serve others ever changed. He served as a dedicated lawyer and faithful Marine.
For a long time, our seminary class would have annual reunions on the Sunday between Christmas and New Years. As I saw John over the years he continued his dream of helping people. I remember how proud he was when he finished John Marshall Law School and was on his way to a legal career. He seemed like he had found the calling he had been looking for up to that point in his life.
I have fond memories of John's super impressive presence whenever he entered a room. His rosy face and bright (blue, I think) eyes would be darting around the room looking into all the faces, acknowledging all the people he knew and saying something fast and quippy to each person that showed how well he knew them and cared about them. He would flash his infectious smile. He had a wonderful way that made everyone feel known much more deeply than words could say.
He was a truly amazing person to just watch live.
The world is just not as wonderful now as it used to be when John was with us. Rest in Peace, John. We'll all be together soon.