Aug. 9, 1926 - Dec. 30, 2012
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John passed away peacefully Dec. 30, 2012 in Los Alamos. He is survived by his wife Anita M. Drake of Los Alamos; his son John Michael Drake and girlfriend Elenore Chavez of Los Alamos; his son Roger W. Drake of Rochester, Minn.; and his daughter Deann and husband Alec Caspersen and her son Logan K. Caspersen. Logan was John's only grandson, whom he adored.
John was born in Clovis. He grew up on a farm in McAlister. He went to high school in Glendora, Calif. He was very athletic and was top five in his high school for basketball, football, and track. He joined the Navy at seventeen during World War II and served from Aug. 5, 1944 until June 5, 1946. John served in the Pacific on the USS Daly. John married Anita in 1952 and had celebrated sixty years together in November. John worked on the family farm until he went to work for the Southern Pacific Railroad. After that, he moved to Los Alamos to work for AEC for the security force for 27 years. He then worked for security at Mason & Hanger. Then, he worked for Los Alamos National Laboratory until he retired.
John had a passion for gardening. He loved to work in the yard all day. He enjoyed roses and delphiniums. He was a member of the Delphinium Society in England and the National Rose Society. He even tried to breed his own delphinium cross breed. He enjoyed giving away flowers and vegetables in the neighborhood. John could fix anything and was often called to a neighbor's for help. He belonged to the Geology Club of Los Alamos and loved to hunt for fossils. He also wrote about his days in World War II and belonged to the Tin Can Sailors. A series of his writing was published in the Tin Can Sailors and the Albuquerque Journal.
Services are pending with DeVargas Funeral Home. For information, call 505-662-2400 or visit devargasfuneral.com. He will be buried at the Santa Fe National Cemetary. He will be dearly missed by his family.
DeVargas Funeral Home
623 N. Railroad Ave. Espanola, NM 87532
Published in Los Alamos Monitor from Jan. 2 to Jan. 3, 2013