John M. Retherford
October 7, 1954 - April 2, 2021
Tacoma, Washington - John passed away quietly on Good Friday after a long battle with his health. He was a thoughtful, gentle friend, colleague, husband and father. He was genuinely curious and warm towards others. He was a graduate of the University of Kansas with a degree in Philosophy and minor in geography. John was an excellent listener, able to discern the underlying challenge and develop practical data solutions that worked for people over his long career as an entrepreneur with his business Paralax Systems and database manager at Russell Investments and Donor Relations, University of Puget Sound.
Skillful as he was with computing systems, his twin passions were music and sailing. His skill with baroque and classical music, especially viola, cello, guitar, oboe and mandolin were mesmerizing. Later in life, he returned to composing, completing a first symphony reflective of contemporary politics and social justice before illness intervened.
On the water, under sail he relaxed and explored Puget Sound. He played 'salty dog' and lover of a bawdy, good rollicking sea chanty! He enjoyed his Newport 30 and dreamed of a trip offshore.
John is survived by his mother Lucia Retherford Harlan, sister Joyce Overly, former wife April Reid, and two children John and Nori Retherford. A private family service will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations be made in his name to Doctors Without Borders
, USA P.O. Box 5030, Hagerstown, MD 21741.
Published by News Tribune (Tacoma) on Apr. 10, 2021.