John J. McLaughry passed away on November 28, 2007, at the Tockwotton Home in Providence, after a long illness. He leaves his wife, Lois Lindblom McLaughry, of Providence, his children, Richard McLaughry of Needham, MA, David McLaughry, of Farmington, CT, and Marguerite Ames, of Norwich, VT, his stepson, Edwin Salisbury of Scotia, NY, and 6 grandchildren.
Mr. McLaughry was born on April 8, 1917, in New Wilmington, PA, the son of DeOrmond Tuss and Florence (Jackson) McLaughry. He spent most of his childhood in Providence, graduating from the Moses Brown School in 1936.
He attended college at Brown University, where he received a degree in Art, and was the President of the Class of 1940 and a member of Alpha Delta Phi. While at Brown, he was captain of the football team and an All-American football player, and was an All-American at the hammer throw. He played on the Eastern College All-Stars team which defeated the New York Giants in 1940. After graduation from Brown, he played a season of professional football for the Giants. He was recently named to the Brown University All-Time Football Team.
During the Second World War, Mr. McLaughry served as an officer in the 4th Marines, and saw action on various Pacific islands, including Guadalcanal, Bougainville, Guam and Okinawa, retiring as a major. He was among the first of the troops to arrive in Japan following the end of the war.
His career was primarily as a football coach. After a year as an assistant coach at the University of Connecticut, he served as head football coach at Union College (1947-49), Amherst College (1950-58) and Brown University (1959-66). He later served as the Director of Summer and Special Projects at Brown until his retirement in 1979.
Throughout his life his greatest interest was his art. He was an active painter throughout his career, particularly after his retirement. He was a longtime member of the Providence Art Club where his work was shown several times.
During the 1990s, he spent much of his time caring for his previous wife, Anne (Van Dyck), who passed away after a long illness in 1999. In 2000, he had the good fortune to marry his current wife, Lois, and they had several happy years together.
A Memorial Service will be held on Saturday December 15, 2007 at 1 p.m. in the Central Congregational Church, Angell St. Providence. Donations in lieu of flowers can be made to the Alzheimer’s Association or the Brown University Sports Foundation.