John Haines
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John Robert Bunting Haines of Downingtown, Pennsylvania, died on February 7 after a brief illness. He was 88 years old. The son of the late Sylvia Haines and Dr. John B. Haines, he grew up in Upper Darby and Ardmore, Pennsylvania, and lived in Malvern, PA, for many years before moving to Downingtown. A 1952 graduate of The Episcopal Academy, John was inducted into its Hall of Fame and the Pennsylvania High School Track and Field Hall of Fame. At Episcopal, he ran the second-fastest 440-yard dash in the country and set state records in the 220 and 440. As a high school student, he competed in the 1952 Olympic Trials finals and was named an AAU All-American for the 100-yard dash. A 1956 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School, he is the only athlete ever to win four consecutive U.S. national championships in the same event, capturing the 60-yard dash as a student-athlete from 1953 through 1956 (when he doubled as 55-meter dash national champion). A three-time All American and two-time American record holder, he tied the world record in the 60-yard dash as a collegian. While at Penn, John competed in the 1956 Olympic Trials where he was a finalist in the 100-meter, 200-meter, and 400-meter dashes. As a Penn senior in 1956, he was one of seven American athletes selected by the U.S. State Department for a goodwill tour of West Africa, competing in meets in Liberia, Ghana and Nigeria. John was devoted to the Penn Relays Carnival, the world’s largest track meet held annually at Philadelphia’s Franklin Field. He competed as a middle school, high school and college runner, and set the meet record for 100-yard dash. He later transitioned to officiating, eventually to be joined by several children and grandchildren. John was a Penn Relays official for 53 years, its longest tenured official ever, most recently as Chief Umpire. His fellow officials twice recognized him for tireless devotion and service. John also officiated at numerous national and international meets, including the Martin Luther King Jr. International Freedom Games. He is survived by his wife, Susan Haines; his children Joyce, John, Mark, Christopher, Matthew and Sarah; and by several grandchildren and great-grandchildren. Donations in lieu of flowers may be made to Friends of the Penn Relays.

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Published in The Daily Local from Feb. 7 to Feb. 8, 2021.
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10 entries
February 15, 2021
I knew John from being a customer of his place of work. He was always such a character! My guess is that no one ever had to tell him he needed to come out of his shell! :) He regularly spoke so highly of his wife (Sue, I am so sorry for your lose) and his kids. He ALWAYS had a story to tell. I really enjoyed talking with him and always made it a point to go see him even when I did not need anything from his department. I will truly miss him and his stories.
Mark Meehan
February 12, 2021
I would like to, that say John took me under his wing from the first time I met him. Like a Father figure to me. Always was supportive of Joyce and myself. Willing and able to help anytime we need it. From moving to a new house to simple house hold projects. Was always willing to help with Dan, Steve and a comfort to us when we were in need. Always willing to give me advise when asked, kind and enjoyable to be with. Will always remember the great times on the boat at the Chesapeake Bay. Fun weekends in Lancaster and even the chance dinner at the same restaurant, the same day at the same time wile Joyce and I were on our Honeymoon in Williamsburg Virginia. He paid the tab, as he did many, many times. Will be greatly missed. Thanks for all the memories.
Jeffrey Hill
February 12, 2021
Over the 20 or so years that I have been friends with John, I was always touched by his selflessness and delighted by his never ending sense of humor. I count him as a good friend and will truly miss him.
Vince Carosella
February 9, 2021
John and I are long time good friends and brother officials at the Penn Relays. I thought he was immortal, and I think, so did he.

A very good man with a wry sense of humor for sure. I will miss my long time official-brother for ever. RIP John, Bill Thomson
Bill Thomson
February 9, 2021
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February 9, 2021
Sue, so sorry for your loss. Praying for you and family.
Jeff Dant
February 8, 2021
John and I were close friends at Episcopal and Penn.As he was setting world track records, he was always a humble person.
Jim Siegel
February 8, 2021
I miss our conversations and visits. I only knew you for a short time but will remember you for a lifetime. Rip John, enjoy your next journey.
David Stewart
February 8, 2021
I didn't really know John well in person but his wife Sue spoke highly of him all the time. I got a very clear sense for her admiration and abundance of love she had for him. The type of relationship that we all wish for. After reading his obituary I now see how many amazing things he accomplished in his life!l He seemed to go after the very best expression of himself. Good for him and I hope he now has time to rest and smile back over his life, family, and friends.
Thad Whittenburg
February 8, 2021
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.
Randy Nicolella
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