SOLOMON--John David. Beloved father of Sara and Rebecca, husband of Abby, son of Ann and Richard, brother of Jimmy, cherished friend to so many, passed away on November 1, 2010 at the age of 47. He died of complications from a stem cell transplant for treatment of leukemia. An accomplished journalist, John was a regular contributor to publications, including The Washington Post, The New York Times and USA Today, as well as to National Public Radio, on homeland security and other public policy topics. He was working on a book about emergency preparedness, to be published in 2011, called, "In Case Of Emergency, Read Book: Simple Steps To Prepare You and Your Family For Terrorism, Natural Disasters and Other 21st Century Crises." John wanted it "to serve as a guide and encouragement for citizens to begin the preparedness process." He created the blog, "In Case of Emergency, Read Blog - A Citizen's Eye View of Public Preparedness", whose readers included the head of the Federal Emergency Management Agency according to The Washington Post. Many days (and nights) John would be in his home office or hospital room preparing his next "Feed Blitz". Born June 7, 1963 in Boston, MA, John was raised in New York City where he attended Collegiate School. Selected "Head Boy" by his classmates and faculty, he maintained a lifelong association with the school, from being a member of its Board of Trustees to leading the East Side against the West in 30 annual Thanksgiving Friday football games. John graduated from Harvard College, with a "major" in The Harvard Crimson, and relished being at his 25th Reunion this past spring with his adored girls. His avid interest in politics and, in particular, the role of government developed early, including working the floor of the 1980 Democratic National Convention. John began his career as the Press Secretary for U.S. Congressman Philip Sharp before joining New York City's homeless housing development unit. After working in India, John attended Harvard Business School, graduating in 1991. He returned to New York City to manage Lifetime Television's news and public service campaigns, where he met and fell in love with Abby. They were married on May 9, 1998 and were blessed in 2000 with Sara and in 2002 with Rebecca. John covered so much ground while calling so little attention to himself, it is impossible to know all of his civic contributions - big and small. He was a founding board member of the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance, an Adjunct Instructor in Emergency Medicine at the State University of New York College of Medicine, an active member of New York City's Citizen Emergency Response Team Program, and a Vice Chair of the Trauma and Family Violence Division of the Jewish Board of Family and Children's Services. An All-City basketball player and gifted leader, John was always up for a pickup game - even while on his honeymoon. Through his incomparable kindness, humility, wit, intelligence, integrity, grace, enthusiasm, determination, empathy and love he elevated all of us, individually and collectively. Friends may call Tuesday evening 7-9pm at Frank E. Campbell, 1076 Madison Avenue at 81st Street. Services will be Wednesday, November 3, 10am at Temple Emanu-El, Fifth Avenue at 65th Street. In lieu of flowers, donations in John's memory may be sent to The New York Community Trust for the John D. Solomon Memorial Fund (at 909 Third Avenue, New York, NY 10022) to be disbursed for the charitable purposes that John held dear.
Published in New York Times on Nov. 2, 2010.