JOHN ATCHESON (1948 - 2020)

  • "I as so saddened to hear this; John shared many of the same..."
    - Peter Stephenson
  • "John, I am but one of legions of your Walter Johnson High..."
    - Marilyn Tabor
  • "My deepest sympathy to the family of John Atcheson. May you..."
    - N. S.
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John Benson Atcheson  
1948-2020  

John Atcheson lived fully, touched the hearts and minds of many, and embodied thoughtfulness and compassion. His life ended much too soon on January 6, 2020 in a tragic car accident. John was born in Newark, New Jersey and the family moved to Bethesda, MD when he was 14. He went to Walter Johnson High School and later joined the Army. Following that, he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Geology from the University of Maryland. He married Linda Goble in 1975, and they had two beautiful children together, Megan and Will. Settled in Rockville, Maryland, John began a successful career in environmental protection, first in pollution prevention at the EPA, and later at the Department of Energy focusing on energy efficiency and renewable energy. John and Linda divorced, and he went on to create a loving home for his children. He loved them fiercely and was proud of the people they've become. He was looking forward to his son's wedding in May and welcoming Will's fiancé Amanda to the family. He was an amazing and beloved stepfather to Kiel and Kevin Pratt, and was adored by Kiel's wife, Anna and grandsons, Benjamin, Daniel, and James. John and Linda Pratt cultivated a remarkable cross-country courtship for 16 years, he in Rockville, Maryland and she in San Diego, California. Each had two children to nurture before they built their life together. When John retired in 2009, he moved to San Diego, and they were married in 2010. They were very happy and truly grateful for their enduring love. John had an unquenchable thirst for knowledge and could synthesize information better than anyone. He loved cooking, photography, and continued to advocate for environmental protection. He published two books and was a frequent and very popular contributor to the online news service CommonDreams.org. But most of all, he was an irreplaceable soul full of light and love and humor and wisdom. He will be forever missed. In addition to his wife, children and grandchildren, he is survived by his older brothers, James Donald and Gordon Atcheson. A memorial service is being planned in DC at the end of September. You are welcome to make a contribution to one of his favorite nonprofit organizations: CommonDreams.org www.commondreams.org/donate; Stay Cool for Grandkids www.staycool4grandkids.org ; or to his Unitarian church, UUFSD.org, where John's name will be placed on a Memorial Wall.

Published in The Washington Post on Feb. 8, 2020
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