John was born on November 27, 1933 in Appleton, WI. He was the son of Rollin O. and Helene McElroy. John was baptized and confirmed into church membership at First Congregational Church in Appleton, WI in 1949. He graduated from Appleton High School in 1952. After high school he worked for Brennan/Frazer Roofing and Siding for 10 years but was not fond of working outdoors in the winter so he went back to school, attending the University of Wisconsin-Stout, receiving a Bachelor and Masters Degree of Science in 1971 with a major in Industrial Education. He was very proud of his college degrees.
John married his love for life Marlys J. Engstrom on May 30, 1970 in St. Paul, MN. A loving, thoughtful husband for nearly 52 years. e began teaching at Waupaca High School in 1973, retiring in 1998. He taught Technical Education, mainly automotive mechanics. John worked well with his hands. He could make or repair most anything. He enjoyed his antique cars, collecting Lionel trains or collecting most anything old…he was a true American Picker. He could tinker in his garage for hours. Also loved to travel across the country in their full-sized van, went on many cruises to the Caribbean, Alaska, Hawaii, Panama but especially loved Florida where he spent the winter months attending Florida’s huge flea market, eating strawberries and watching the beautiful sunsets.
Preceded in death by his parents, Rollin O. and Helene M. McElroy, aunts and uncles and a brother-in-law. Surviving John is his wife, Marlys; his sister, M. Jane Dawson, St. Petersburg, FL; his brother, Frank (Rita) McElroy, Raleigh, NC; brothers and sisters-in-law, Larry Engstrom, Richard (Marylou) Engstrom, Dennis Engstrom, Barbara Engstrom, all of the Twin Cities area. Many nephews and nieces, great nephews and nieces, and loyal friends Jim and Sharon Richmond.
Visitation will be held Thursday, March 31 from 10 to 11:30 am followed by a service at Maple Crest Funeral Home, Waupaca, WI. Private burial will be at the Riverside Cemetery, Appleton, WI. In lieu of flowers, memorials to “Friends of Wisconsin Public Television.”