John M. Parker
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PARKER JOHN MORGAN PARKER Funeral services for Lieutenant Colonel (retired) John Morgan Parker, who died on Sunday, September 5, 2010, at his home near Leesburg, Virginia, will be held at noon, Monday, October 18, 2010 at St. John's Episcopal Church, 6701 Wisconsin Avenue, in Chevy Chase, MD. He will be buried with full military honors at Arlington National Cemetery at 3 p.m. A reception at St. John's will immediately follow. John was born in Huntington, West Virginia, on September 16, 1923. He was a graduate of Greenbrier Military School and University of Nebraska at Omaha, and he received a Masters in Public Administration from Arizona State University. His life was marked by a long record of distinguished public service. A graduate of Infantry Officer Candidate School, he served during World War II as an infantry platoon leader, battalion staff officer, and Aide-de-Camp in the 11th Airborne Division. He led troops in combat in New Guinea and the Philippines, including at the Battle of Nichols Field, a costly operation that helped ensure the liberation of Manila. Upon Japan's surrender, John was selected to serve with the American advance party and was one of the first Americans in Tokyo. He returned to Japan in 1949 as a Company Commander-in- the 25th Infantry Division, leading his unit in the defense of Korea in 1950. He later served at posts in Europe and the US. His assignments included duty with the Army's "Old Guard" at Fort Myer and Arlington National Cemetery, Plans Officer for Army COMZ in France, Public Affairs Officer at Fort Huachuca and Fort Jackson, inaugural Chair of the Applied Journalism Department of the Defense Information School, and as Deputy Public Affairs Officer for Joint Military Assistance Command in Thailand. He retired in 1968 at the rank of Lieutenant Colonel. His commendations and awards and qualifications included three Purple Hearts, three Bronze Star Medals, the Joint Service Commendation Medal, Glider Wings, Parachutist Badge, Pathfinder Badge, and the Combat Infantryman Badge with Second Award. After retiring from the military, John worked in Arizona as a Branch Manager for First National Bank of Arizona, Justice of the Peace, City Magistrate, Deputy Director of the Arizona Department of Emergency Service, and as an Instructor of Journalism at Cochise Community College. After retiring from the State of Arizona, he served as a FEMA Reservist. He was an active Rotary Club member, Cub Scout Pack Master, and Church Lay Reader and Bishop's Committee member. He returned to the Washington DC area, his pre-war home, in the 1990's. John is survived by his loving wife of 62 years Caroline (Morell), a Bethesda native and fifth generation Washingtonian. He is also survived by four children, son, Jay M. Parker and wife, Ila Corinne Bridges of Silver Spring, MD; daughter, Sage Parker and husband, Perry Lang of Santa Barbara, CA; son, Bruce M. Parker and wife, Debbie of Sterling, VA; and daughter, Mary-Louise Parker of New York, NY, and seven grandchildren. The family asks that in lieu of flowers donations be made in memory of John Morgan Parker to Aleethia Foundation, a non-profit organization assisting returning veterans and their families. Donations may be made on-line, www.aleethia.org, or by mail to The Aleethia Foundation, 1718 M Street, NW, Suite 1170, Washington, DC 20036.


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Published in The Washington Post on Oct. 14, 2010.
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October 17, 2010
We had the privilege of being neighbors and friends with John and Caroline while living at Leisure World. After leaving there, we have continued to enjoy conversations with them at various occasions over the last five years. Both are amazing people who make everyone with whom they have contact feel special. We had no idea he was such a decorated man, because he focused on the things that were important to him in the moment--friends and family. We spent many hours playing Rummikube in the Blue Ridge Party room. We know that Caroline, and the rest of the family, will miss him dearly, as will we. With our deepest sympathy
Carlos and Billie Ann Sutton
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