KING, John. Beloved husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, brother, and friend passed away on Wednesday, December 27th, 2023, at Royal University Hospital in Saskatoon. He was predeceased by his parents, Albert and Elizabeth, his brother Albert, and sisters Betty and Hilda. He is survived by his wife, Myrna, their three daughters Kate (Jim), Saskatoon; Marie (Eric), Edmonton; Vicki (Dave), Calgary; six grandchildren and two great-grandchildren. He is also survived by his sister, Elsie, of Watford, England.
John was born in Darlington, England on November 4, 1938. After completing his undergraduate degree at Durham University, in England, he applied and was accepted to do his post-graduate studies at the University of Manitoba, in Winnipeg. There, in 1960, he met the love of his life, Myrna, who was also completing her degrees in Biology. John and Myrna married in 1962, and shortly after moved to Quebec for John’s first teaching position at Bishop’s University. In 1965, they were blessed with the birth of twin daughters, Kate and Marie. In 1967, they moved to Saskatoon for a position in the Biology Department at the University of Saskatchewan, and shortly after moving there, welcomed their third daughter, Vicki. John stayed at the U of S for his entire career, with the Biology Department staff becoming like family, and retired in 2006. Some highlights of his career included serving as Head of Department for Biology, being awarded a Society Medal for outstanding contributions in plant physiology in Canada by the Canadian Society of Plant Physiologists, and the publishing of two well-received books.
After retiring, John spent many happy years with Myrna at their home in Saskatoon. John had a passion for music, which he studied with the same dedication he showed to everything. He took voice lessons and sang in several different choirs in Saskatoon over the years. He loved the years he spent singing duets with a good friend, at various venues, and actively participating in his church choir. He was a valued member of the Grace-Westminster United Church community.
John loved his family more than anything and took great pride in seeing them grow and thrive. John was a quiet man at heart and loved simple times with his family and friends – a milestone celebration, a walk in a park, or just a good conversation over coffee. He always maintained his ties to his English family, and John and Myrna visited there as often as they could. He never lost the things that meant the most to him – his sharp mind, his enjoyment of singing, and the ability to experience the unconditional love of his family.
A memorial service will be held later in 2024, and notices will be sent out. Memorial donations may be made to the University of Saskatchewan @ donate.usask.ca.
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