Newbury, VT – John Allen Klark, 63, went to be with Jesus Christ, his Lord and Savior, on Friday, January 13, 2012, at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center, surrounded by his loving family.
John was born at Cottage Hospital in Woodsville, NH, the eldest of four children of Winthrop W. and Thelma (Beaton) Klark. He attended schools in Woodsville and graduated from Woodsville High School in 1967.
As a young boy, John spent many hours at the family farm, tagging along behind the adults, romping in the barn, playing in the brook, creating adventures and enjoying the animals. It was there that he developed a love for horses.
In January 1968 John enlisted in the U.S. Army. He completed paratrooper training at Fort Benning, Georgia and also served two tours of duty in Vietnam as a helicopter scout observer. John flew numerous combat missions, logging over 1,200 hours of flight time. He was proud to serve his country and was highly decorated for meritorious service and heroism. He was humbled by his military experiences and rarely discussed the topic. John was honorably discharged from the Army in August 1970.
After leaving the Army, John attended flight school in Colorado and earned his fixed wing pilot’s license. He loved flying and enjoyed taking family and friends for rides in his vintage Ercoupe airplane.
John had two beautiful children, Scott Benjamin and Lori Beth. John was extremely proud of his children.
John purchased acreage in Newbury and built a home using timber from that land. He loved the peace and solitude of that place and spent many hours caring for the land, relaxing on the porch and watching the wildlife.
For 30 years John was employed as a mail carrier, working mainly at the Woodsville Post Office. He had a special place in his heart for the elderly patrons along his mail route.
On September 25, 1998 John married Janet Wyckoff. They were together for 10 years until Janet’s death as a result of a motor vehicle accident. Together they enjoyed music, traveling, many outdoor activities and serving God, and Janet brought out the very best in John. During this time John became the Eastern Region Representative and later the Director of the Christian Harness Horsemen’s Association (CHHA), a non-profit organization that offers Christian support and ministry to people in the world of harness racing. John and Janet worked tirelessly in this endeavor, met many wonderful people and enjoyed serving the Lord in this way. After Janet’s death, a CHHA college scholarship fund was established in her name and this fund continues to provide financial assistance to worthy college students who are affiliated with the world of harness racing. This was a project near and dear to John’s heart and it is the family’s hope that it can continue. For a brief time, John had also raised and raced harness horses.
John loved music and musical instruments. He had an especially keen ear for percussion instruments. He also enjoyed combing antique shops, flea markets and what-not shops looking for unusual or unique finds. He had the ability to find just the right gift for each person in his life and was especially thoughtful and generous. Although a private person, John also enjoyed spending time with his friends and church family. Most of all, he cherished his family and adored spending time with his children and grandchildren, devoting special “Grampa” days to each grandchild, taking them to Elizabeth’s Park or to the fairs, going to see trains or having them help at the racetracks.
John was predeceased by his wife, Janet, on February 5, 2009. He is survived by his parents, Winthrop & Thelma Klark of Woodsville, NH, his beloved children, Lori Maxim & husband Eric of China, Maine, Scott Klark & wife Margie of W. Danville, VT, his precious grandchildren, Mya & Kolby Maxim and Lilli & Leah Klark, his sisters, Joanne Mann & husband Rod and Amy Wright & husband Allen, all of Woodsville, and Lindsay Trombley & husband “Butch” of Candia, NH, 3 stepchildren, Ben, Gabe & Jacob Cadreact, and several aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins.
Visiting hours will be held from 6 to 8 P.M. on Thursday, January 19, 2012 at Ricker Funeral Home, 1 Birch Street, Woodsville, NH. A celebration of John’s life will be held at 11 A.M. on Friday, January 20, 2012, at Ricker Funeral Home with Pastor Rick Menard officiating. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to either the Janet Klark Scholarship Fund, Christian Harness Horsemen’s Association, 157 No. Main Street, Salem, NH 03079 or the Grafton County Nursing Home Association Activities Fund, 3855 Dartmouth College Highway, No. Haverhill, NH 03774.