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John Quirk
  • Passed away on May 19, 2020

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Obituary

John Edward Quirk

October 24, 1935 – May 19, 2020

John E. Quirk passed away Tuesday, May 19th. He was born on Chicago’s South Side to Maurice and Nellie Quirk, and was known as Jackie as a child. From an early age, John had a strong desire to serve his country. He enrolled in Army ROTC in high school, then served in the Navy, Marines, Army, and Air Force before going back to The Army where he retired with over 21 years of service. John completed 3 tours in Vietnam, earning both The Bronze Star and Meritorious Service Medals. He was especially proud of his time spent with the elite MACV-SOG task force and in the 101st Airborne Division, as well as his first assignment in Germany where he was part of the now-declassified Operation PBJOINTLY, known as the Berlin Tunnel operation. After working 28 years at The Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago, he retired and moved to Florida with his wife in 2007. They became actively involved in their Church (Our Lady Star of the Sea in New Smyrna Beach), the Florida East Coast Bromeliad Society, and The Loyal Order of Moose (Daytona Beach Lodge in Ormond Beach) where he regularly danced up a storm. Fond of traveling, they also were members of PORT (Port Orange Retired Travelers). Hobbies included anything military, but particularly WWII warplanes. And his day could not begin without his cup of coffee, the morning Crosswords (from The Chicago Tribune and The New York Times), and listening to Big Band music. He was also an avid reader, with a preference for Spy Novels, born out of his real-life involvement in “one of the most valuable and daring projects” The CIA has ever been involved in (Allen Dulles, Director of The CIA 1953-1961). ‘Spies Beneath Berlin’ (a documentary for cable television based on the book of the same name by David Stafford) and ‘Betrayal In Berlin’ (a book by Steve Vogel) prominently featured his involvement in this mission, as does the exhibit at the International Spy Museum in Washington, D.C. A proud Veteran with a gentle and generous spirit that touched all who met him, he will be greatly missed. John is survived by his wife Hedy of 53 years, daughter and son-in-law Michele and Brian Walsh, and daughter Heather along with granddaughters Cadence, Sydney, Kelsey, and fiancé Christopher Doherty. A funeral mass is planned for 11am on Thursday, May 21st at Our Lady Star of The Sea in New Smyrna Beach Beach (https://ourladystar.com). In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory at Vietnam Veterans Of America (https://vva.org/donate/


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  1. 21 May 2020
    Brian posted an image:
    A span of more than 60 years.
    A span of more than 60 years.

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