John Jinishian
Plant a Tree
Plant a Tree
Send Flowers
Send Flowers

Final Resting Place

Mountain Grove Crematory
2675 North Avenue
Bridgeport, Connecticut, United States

Obituary of John Jinishian

John Jinishian passed away peacefully at Maplewood of Darien, CT on Tuesday, May 19, just two weeks after celebrating his 100th birthday. JJ was a loving father, grandfather, and uncle, who was admired for his down-to-earth nature, personal warmth, charm, and community-minded spirit. Born on May 2, 1920, at Lenox Hill Hospital in Manhattan, to Asador Jinishian and Mary Kazarian, he grew up in Forest Hills, New York. After graduating from Amherst College in 1941, he served in the U.S. Navy, becoming a Lieutenant SG commanding convoy ships and sub-chasers in the Atlantic and Pacific. In 1949, he started his business career at U.S. Plywood (which became Champion International) and in 1950 married Lucy Frances Man of Forest Hills. They lived in Essex and other towns in Connecticut before settling in Old Greenwich in 1960 where they raised four children. In 1983, John retired from Champion International (now International Paper), as Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing. From 1983 to 1993 John volunteered for International Executive Service Corps (IESC), recruiting retired executives to advise businesses in developing countries, and traveling to Honduras to share his own expertise with the lumber industry there. He also volunteered as Guardian ad Litem in the Stamford Juvenile Court helping juveniles with family issues and served with Women Entrepreneurs and Business Owners (WEBO) in Bridgeport, CT, to help women start small businesses. He was a proud and regular blood donor to the Greenwich Red Cross. He and Lucy traveled widely spending many winter vacations on the Caribbean island of Bequia, and summer vacations at the Man family home in Saranac Lake, NY, and on the Peconic Bay in Mattituck, NY. In 2009, John and Lucy moved to a house on the river in East Norwalk’s Marvin Beach. They were embraced by the community making many new friends and participated in Norwalk’s Tree Replacement Program for which they received a citation from the city in 2016. A lifelong sailor and fisherman, John long enjoyed sailing his various boats, many named “Lucy J,” on the waters of Long Island Sound and Peconic Bay, and cruising from Maine to the Chesapeake. When Lucy was Chairwoman of the Greenwich Shellfish Commission, he used his boat to help seed and harvest the clam and oyster beds on Long Island Sound. At the age of 85, he built his last boat by hand, a 12’ lapstrake pulling boat he rowed on the river in Norwalk, CT. John was a lifetime member of the Riverside Yacht Club. A man of moderation, he enjoyed good food and drink and sharing it with others, whether it be shad roe, shish kabob, oysters, clams, or his famous pig roasts at Vista Avenue. He was a prolific reader of biographies and books on history, boating and the natural world. and a life-long backgammon player who was hard to beat! He played tennis throughout his life and as a young man had the highly coveted job of running the U.S. Open seat cushion concession originally held at the Westside Tennis Club in Forest Hills during the 1930’s. John was predeceased by his wife, Lucy, in 2017 and his sister, Grace Berger, who lived to 102. He is survived by his four children, Russell, Stonington, CT; Alex (Nora), Westport, CT; Laura (Richard Davis), Beverly, MA; and Hope, Saugerties, NY; seven grandchildren and one great grandchild. A private memorial service will be held by the family. Donations can be made in John’s name to the Connecticut Food Bank, 2 Research Parkway, Wallingford, CT 06492, or online at: https://donate.ctfoodbank.org/. To sign his online guest register, please visit www.LeskoPolkeFuneralHome.com
Share Your Memory of
John