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John Whiteside

1943 - 2016 Obituary Condolences Gallery
John Whiteside Obituary
Whiteside, John

1943 - 2016

On the night of October 17 - 18, John Whiteside passed away at his home in Albuquerque. John died peacefully in his sleep after a long illness. His final days were happy and comfortable, in the company of loving, caring people. John is dearly missed by his many friends, both old and new, as well as his wife Fran, sons Trent and Blake, grandson Jonah, and other family members.

Growing up in Texas and Colorado, John was especially close to his sister Sally, who remained close in his heart even after her death. John's family valued dedication to service, and he felt a personal responsibility to contribute to the common good.

John believed universal access to all levels of education to be a necessity in any society. Professionally, his mission was to assure that post-secondary education was accessible to all New Mexicans, regardless of their personal financial resources. His work as Financial Aid Director at the University of New Mexico, and later as Executive Director of the State's Education Trust Board, helped to enable thousands of students to attend NM's colleges and universities. John's work took him to all parts of the country, as he served on national boards, including NASFAA's, and in advisory roles for national organizations such as the NCAA.

Avocations involving both play and a sense of fellowship were an important part of John's life at every age. While a high-school football player in Dumas, Texas, his team won the state championship. He went on to play football on scholarship at ENMU, where he became a member of the Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity, and later earned a master's degree. As an adult, football with teammates was replaced by weekly poker with friends, and later by a weekly round of golf. And finally by walks in the park with his buddies.

John touched the lives of many people, and some may wonder what they can do to honor his memory. One way to honor John is to follow his example in living a life of integrity, with a generous and loving heart, finding joy at every stage of life. Each of us who knew John will find our own way to honor his memory, whether we choose to donate to a scholarship fund, volunteer to help hospice patients, coach a child's soccer team, or simply be a good parent.

In keeping with John's wishes, there has been no funeral service, and cremation has taken place. A memorial celebration of John's life is being planned and will soon be announced here. We hope that those who knew him will attend and join in sharing stories of their time with John.
Published in Albuquerque Journal on Nov. 13, 2016
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