Obituaries

3301 Cottman Avenue, Philadelphia PA 19149

215-624-5150 | 215-624-3302

 

 

                   “Many a time have they afflicted me from my youth,
                              yet they have not prevailed agains tme.”    
                                                        Psalm 129.2

Age 69, of Mayfair, Philadelphia.  Lost his battle against COVID-19 on April 26, 2020.

John was the beloved son of the late Bernard McGrath and Jacqueline O’Neill McGrath; and husband to the late Jane Rodgers McGrath.

Born and raised in the Mayfair section of Philadelphia, John attended St. Matthew’s Parish School and was graduated from Father Judge High School for Boys in June of 1968.

Following two years of technical training John was certified as a respiratory therapist in the State of Pennsylvania.  He served in that capacity first at Roxborough Hospital then later at Parkview Hospital, both in Philadelphia.  He also worked as a visiting caregiver, providing respiratory services to home -bound patients.

John was a skilled and conscientious therapist, whose professional and personal experiences built a compassion in him which he never lost.

All his life John fought against the relentless insidious disease which first made its appearance in his life when he was six years old.  For sixty years he withstood the ravages of the worst form of diabetes without complaint. Besides the constant need to monitor his volatile sugar levels, and the three injections of insulin he self-administered daily, and the always present danger of hypoglycemic shock, John suffered over the years a heart attack, two strokes, significant hearing loss, serious kidney dysfunction, the loss of both legs to amputation and eventually a pulmonary condition which undoubtedly hastened the sad conclusion to his battle with COVID-19.  All of this he suffered stoically and without complaint.

As a counter to the slow debilitation of his body, and the loss of his ability to work at his profession, John cultivated a love of reading and deepened his life-long passion for music.  His taste in music was eclectic:  it ran to Rock, Jazz and the Blues; Dylan, Lennon and Hendrix; Coltrane, Davis and Corea; Muddy Waters and John Mayall.

His reading was as varied:  Mysteries, history and science; Michael Connolly, Elmore Leonard and Robert Parker, The Struggle for Irish Independence and America’s Great Wars, especially The Civil war and World War II,  always with the focus on the individuals who fought those wars.

Many of the caregivers and social workers who attended John through the trials of the last few years have expressed their deep sadness at his passing.  He was universally liked and was always one of their favorites.

John was the proud father of Erin(James Clift) John, Jr.(Lauren), William(Amber) and Courtney; Grandfather of Oliver and Corrine; fondly remembered brother of Bernard, Jr., MaryJane McGrath Coppola(Joseph), Suzanne McGrath Stinson(Ralph) and Brother Michael McGrath, OSFS.; and Uncle to Jacqueline, JuliAngela and Christopher Coppola.

John, we miss our Father, our Grandfather, our Brother, our Uncle, and our Friend.  We miss your incisive appreciation of this complex world.  We miss your conversation and your kind heart.

Because of the restrictions surrounding the Coronavirus pandemic, memorial services and interment will be held at a later date to be announced.  Memorial donations may be made in John’s name to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation at https://www.jdrf.org/


John F. Fluehr & Sons, Inc.

Funeral Home Serving Families Since 1898

3301 Cottman Avenue
Philadelphia PA 19149

215-624-5150
215-624-3302

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