John Byron Gordon was born on December 10, 1930 in South Bend Indiana, and died January 6, 2019. His mother was Helen Frances (Simon) and John Alexander Gordon. John, (JB as he liked to be called), graduated from Riley High School in South Bend and was drafted into the Army during the Korean Conflict. He served honorably in the combat zone in Korea as a Military Police Officer. Always the patriot, he loved his country. After serving in the Army, he attended Indiana University in Bloomington where he studied in the school of business. John was an innovative and creative person and found success in manufacturing. He started his own business in the automotive industry creating fuse holders, and in the recreational vehicle industry as a supplier of electrical wire harnesses, switch controls and lamp assemblies; several of which he had patented. Being very well spoken and enthusiastic about his products, one of his employees once quipped that John could “sell a double bed to the Pope”. He had a delightful sense of humor.
A very positive person and encouraging to others; he always saw his cup as half full as opposed to half empty. As an avid outdoorsman he enjoyed bi-annual fishing trips to Pine Portage Lodge in Canada with his sons, grandson and friends each May, and with Rose and other couples in September. He was also a private pilot and enjoyed flying back and forth from Indiana and North Carolina. For many years John enjoyed golfing with his friends at Morris Park.
He spent most of his life in South Bend/Granger then retired full time in the mountains of North Carolina in 2003. John was a member of the Elks Club and the Press Club in South Bend for many years. He was also a member of Sacred Heart Parish at Notre Dame and Sacred Heart Church in North Carolina. John’s youngest son, Courtney, preceded him in death in 2006 which left a great sadness.
He is survived by Rose, his wife and companion of 37 years; his former wife Sharon and their three children; Susan Frances Romanowski (Gary) of Corpus Christi, TX; John Byron Jr. of North Dakota, David Michael of Highland-Villages, TX, and his step daughter (whom he loved as his own) Lori Ann Boecher (Dan) of Elkhart, IN. He had 11 grandchildren and 10 great grandchildren. He cherished his lifelong friendship with business partner Clive Lu. He also loved his dogs, which were a constant source of enjoyment and entertainment.
A Funeral Mass will be held at 11 am on Saturday, January 19, at Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Burnsville, North Carolina.
A Prayer Service will be held at 3 pm on Saturday, February 2, in Goethals & Wells Funeral Home, Mishawaka. A time of visitation from 3:45 pm to 6:00 pm will follow the service. Private burial will take place in Fairview Cemetery, Mishawaka.
Memorial contributions are suggested to St. Joseph County Right to Life, South Bend, or to Humane Society of St. Joseph County, Mishawaka.
The family wishes to thank the Blue Ridge Hospice team, Smokey Ridge and the Charles George VA Medical Center and in addition to neighbors and friends for all their help and support during his illness.
Humane Society of St. Joseph County
2506 Grape Road, Mishawaka IN 46545
St. Joseph County Right to Life
2004 Ironwood Circle, South Bend IN 46635