John Vernon Head: June 22nd, 1947 - June 5th, 2011

June 5 2011

It is with love that I wish to celebrate the amazing years that John Vernon Head was a larger than life man on this earth. My dad lived live on his own terms. I have never known anyone who loved or spoiled those he cared about more. While we often disagreed on the path that our day to day lives should follow, his impact on my life can never be measured. Dad treated all four of his children, those by blood and those by marriage, as the most important four people in his life. I will miss our talks on the phone daily about sports, about how he knew what was best for the world (politically), and his excitement of our next visit.

Image:John Vernon Head: June 22nd, 1947 - June 5th, 2011

My Dad as he graduated law school

Image:John Vernon Head: June 22nd, 1947 - June 5th, 2011

My father and I during Christmas 1976

My father's wishes was for no funeral or memorial, so the family is going to throw a party on his birthday later this month. My father would far prefer that those that loved him had a shot of tequila in his name verse shed any tears. Sorry Dad, I broke the tear promise.

Many of you have asked what you can do to help. I thank you for asking - and I would ask that you pick up a book and read and think about your parents. My father read three times more than anyone else I have ever met. Maybe three times more than any three people. It has to be pleasure reading - no work related stuff. Pick something fun in fiction and enjoy. He would love to know his memory is being remembered thru reading. If you are not into reading, watch "The American President" or any episode of 'The West Wing" - he loved both of those more than any other TV show or Movie.

June is going to be a long month. Between Father's Day and his birthday, I expect to be pretty emotional. I deeply appreciate everyone's comments and messages. Everyone who has offered to help - I thank you from the bottom of my heart. Please don't be surprised if it takes days for me to respond back.

I love you Dad. You were loved and respected by so many. I know you will be watching over me with my grandparents and Emily. I only hope I can impact so many people so greatly.

30 Responses to “John Vernon Head: June 22nd, 1947 - June 5th, 2011”

  1. 1) Alan Lepofsky says:

    Sorry John. My best wishes to you and your family.

  2. 2) Richard Schwartz says:

    Beautifully and so thoughtfully written, John. My sincere sympathies go out to you and the rest of your family. West Wing was one of my favorite shows, too, and I will be sure to watch it soon and think of you and your Dad.

  3. 3) Rob McDonagh says:

    Take all the time your soul needs, John, none of your friends will begrudge you an instant of it. Losing your dad is a tragedy, but being able to remember him this way is a blessing. If you let us know when the party is, there will be glasses raised around the world.

  4. 4) Keith Brooks says:

    John, Take your time and do what you need to do, family comes first. Work will wait. Will make sure we raise a glass for him at PacLug/The View.

  5. 5) Richard Moy says:

    John, so sorry for your lost. Best wishes to you and your family.

  6. 6) Luis Guirigay says:

    We are very sorry for your lost. You and your family will be in our prayers.

  7. 7) Sri Bedathur says:

    John, I am very sorry for your loss! May you have the strength and peace at this very difficult time.

  8. 8) Roy Rumaner says:

    John, my dad has been gone more than 16 years now (Thanksgiving Day 1994) and there isn't a day that goes by that I don't think of him. He was my best friend and the source of most of my best memories growing up. Time does make it easier to deal with the loss but the good memories will always remain. I am sorry for your loss and will keep you in my thoughts.

  9. 9) Steph Lennox says:

    How eloquently and beautifully you write about a person that you love so much and has had such an impact on yours and obviously so many other people's lives. Thank you for giving me the gift of reading in his honor. Granting me the excuse to read pleasurably in his name. I cannot wait...the world feels like my literary oyster, or would that be my bookstore feels like my oyster waiting for me to find a pearl???? Regardless I am jumping in with 2 feet and much excitement. sending you love, hugs and many thoughts of solace at this time, steph.

  10. 10) Daniel Lieber says:

    John, I'm sorry to hear about your loss and wish you, your family, and those that knew your father condolences. May your father's memory continue to bring you strength and comfort.

  11. 11) Mary Beth Raven says:


    This is a wonderful and loving tribute to your Dad. It is not easy to lose a parent, no matter how old you are.Next time we see each other, remind me that we should drink a toast to the memory of your father.

  12. 12) Kitty Elsmore says:

    So sorry to hear of your loss John.

    5th June 2011 marked 22 years since my Father's death. I honour and remember him through reading, comic songs and humour. And always remember him saying that life was too short to read books you weren't enjoying.

    Sending you and your family all good thoughts and prayers.

  13. 13) John D Head says:

    Thanks for the comment Alan. Appreciate it very much.

  14. 14) John D Head says:

    Thanks Richard. My Dad was more conservative than I was, and he loved The West Wing. I think the beauty of the show is that no matter what your political views, it focused on the process. The process is what was rivetting.

  15. 15) John D Head says:

    Thanks Rob. This event has clearly shown me how many friends I have. I am not sure what made me more emotional - losing Dad or the overflow of support.

  16. 16) John D Head says:

    Thanks Keith. Appreciate the comment.

  17. 17) John D Head says:

    Thanks Richard.

  18. 18) John D Head says:

    Thanks Luis. PSC has been downright amazing in the support.

  19. 19) John D Head says:

    Thanks Sri. You have known me long enough that my relationship with him was a roller coaster :-)

  20. 20) John D Head says:

    Thanks Roy. Appreciate the thoughts.

  21. 21) John D Head says:

    Thanks Steph. Enjoy your reading!

  22. 22) John D Head says:

    Thanks Daniel. Appreciate the comment, thoughts, and prayers.

  23. 23) John D Head says:

    Thanks Mary Beth. Will I see you at IamLUG or MWLUG to have that drink?

  24. 24) John D Head says:

    Thanks Kitty. I appreciate you sharing thoughts about your Dad. Thanks for the thoughts and prayers.

  25. 25) Kathy Compton says:

    We were so sorry to hear of your loss. I used to see your dad at Uncle Clive and Aunt Edna's when we would be visiting at the same time. He was always so happy to be able to help them. Sure he is with them now. You and your family are in our prayers.

  26. 26) Tony Holder says:


    Sorry to hear of your loss. I will be honoured to raise a glass with you in your father's memory next week.


  27. 27) Jason says:

    I'm sorry to hear that you have lost your Dad John.

    If it's ok with you I will donate a book to my children's school and write your Dad's name inside the cover so in a village school in England your Dad will do a little bit to encourage reading.

    I haven't spoken to my father in a few years and that's something I hope doesn't repeat with my own children.

  28. 28) John D Head says:

    Kathy - thanks for the note. I am going to reach out to you directly.

  29. 29) John D Head says:

    Thanks Tony

  30. 30) John D Head says:

    Thanks Jason. I also had a few years of not speaking with my father - twice. I am very glad that changed in early 2010. You should reach out to your Dad. Everything that seperates us doesn't really matter in the end.

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