Deceased March 21, 2020

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In Memory

Following is a loving commentary from his son David, who communicated with me soon after his father died.—Gerry Reilly ’49

John L. Middleton Jr., beloved widower to Marjorie Middleton (nee Doherty), passed from life March 21, 2020. He is survived by four sons, John, Andrew, David and Thomas and five grandchildren.

Born in Cambridge, Mass., in 1925, he attended the Belmont Hill School in his youth and was drafted into the U.S. Air Force in 1944. He graduated from Amherst, majoring in physics. Working as an engineer in the fields of vacuum technology and unusual environment measurement devices for most of his career, he developed and constructed devices used in the Apollo lunar landers.

John was a Boy Scout leader for seven years in Lexington, Mass., and earned a Presidential Fitness Award for bicycling. He loved sailing, downhill skiing, birdwatching, kayaking and bowling in his leisure time and won a Massachusetts Seniors State Bowling Championship.

He was an aficionado of things related to rail transit and was an active member, guide and trustee of the Seashore Trolley Museum in Kennebunkport, Maine, and several model railroad groups in Massachusetts and Maine.

John was also a host docent on the Downeaster and active in that role to the last. His body will be given to UNE’s Medical School for research. The family suggests kindness toward one another as a tribute to his life.

David Middleton

(A postscript from a classmate to note his wonderful, worthwhile life. David told me how much his father enjoyed and profited from his college days. Another ‘forty-niner’ of whom we can be justly proud. —Gerry Reilly ’49)