John Stephen Chitwood
1946 - 2020
John Stephen Chitwood, 73, died in St. Petersburg, Florida on June 26, 2020. Born in Baltimore in 1946 to the late John Allen Chitwood, Jr. and the late Dolores Rita Chitwood (nee Popoli), he is survived by spouse John "Jake" Eckardt of St. Petersburg, Florida; brothers David J. Chitwood of Rockville and Robert A. Chitwood of Severn; and nephew Ryan K. Chitwood of Arlington, Virginia. A graduate of the Baltimore Polytechnic Institute, John received a Bachelor of Science degree in Electrical Engineering from Drexel University and completed substantial coursework at the graduate level at the George Washington University.

John began working at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center as a work-study student in 1964; he retired 37 years later as Head of the Microwave Systems Branch, where responsibilities included developing communication systems for satellites and planetary probes. His passion for his amateur radio license he possessed for 59 years led to positions as Secretary and Treasurer for the Foundation for Amateur Radio; he served on its Scholarship Committee for 46 years.

Interment and a future service will be at Calvary Catholic Cemetery, Clearwater, Florida. Information on this or a possible memorial service in Maryland may be obtained from [email protected] In lieu of flowers, mourners are encouraged to donate to the Maryland SPCA,, 3300 Falls Road, Baltimore, MD 21211, or the Human Rights Campaign,, 1640 Rhode Island Ave NW, Washington DC 20036.
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Published by Baltimore Sun on Jul. 19, 2020.
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5 Entries
John Chitwood was an outstanding gentleman. He headed a major engineering branch at the Goddard Space Flight Center and was known for his technical skills, leadership abilities and fairness. John and his organization made major contributions to our nation's space communication and microwave science efforts.

My thoughts and prayers go out to his family and friends.
Jim Mason
November 7, 2020
John Stephen was a beloved member of our family. He was a kind and humble soul - he never bragged about his amazing career, even though it was worth bragging about! I know I speak for all of my family that our holidays will not be the same without him.
Rob Urick
August 13, 2020
"J.C.", as we called him, was president of our college fraternity at Drexel. As such, he was highly respected as a leader and a Brother. He will be missed by all of us. My heartfelt condolences to his family.
Charles Hagelgans
August 5, 2020
I have known John for many years as a fellow coworker in the Electrical Engineering Division at Goddard. John was an outstanding Communication Engineering as head of the Microwave Systems Branch. John was great to work with and a true gentleman. I am so sorry for you lose. My family and I will keep John and your family in our prayers
Bob Lebair
July 20, 2020
You were always there to save the day for me. You were my hero. May God bless you and keep you.
Jake Eckardt
July 20, 2020
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