John "Fitz" was born in Holloway, Ohio, on August 23, 1934 to the late Howard Lee and Rebecca (Stephen) Fitzgerald. He attended Holloway School for 11 years, graduating from Flushing High School in 1954.
He served four years in the United States Army with the 88th Airborne, attended West Liberty College, and was a Driver Examiner with the Ohio State Highway Patrol retiring in 1991. Since 1993 he has wintered at the Holiday Travel Resort in Leesburg, Florida.
John is survived by his loving wife of 54 years, Joanne (Gibson); four children, Jody Tacosik and husband John of Belmont; Jolene Handy and husband Rick of Sioux Rapids, Iowa; John K. Fitzgerald and wife Maryann of Bethesda; and Julie Kildow and husband Todd of Bethesda; in addition there are 11 grandchildren, Emily Jo and husband Nate Smith of McConnelsville, Jake Tacosik and Luke Tacosik of Belmont; Jon Fitzgerald McComb and Savanna Jo Handy of Iowa; John K. Jr. and Journey Fitzgerald of Bethesda; Ty, Cal, Casey, and Torre Kildow of Bethesda; and two great-granddaughters, Adelyn and Elleigh Smith of McConnelsville.
Also surviving are four sisters, Marguerite Howell and Verna Mae Schlatt of St. Clairsville; Hilda Sullivan, Flushing and Doris Bartley, Lake Park, IA; three brothers, David of Pataskala, Denver of Canton and Michael, Virginia Beach, VA.
In addition to his parents, he was preceded in death by a grandson, Jonathan Gibson Fitzgerald; sisters, Ruth Shipley, Rosetta Buckles and Irene Fitzgerald. A brother, Donald Lee.
He was an avid sportsman throughout his life, enjoying fishing and horseshoes in his retirement. He served as a member on the Belmont County Health Board. He was a member of Flushing American Legion Post 366. He attended the Flushing United Methodist Church. Fitz was a proud American and loved to fly his country's flag.
Family and friends will be received at the Kelly Kemp Braido Patron Funeral Home, Bethesda, on Sunday, from 2 to 8 p.m. and Monday, February 18 from 10 a.m. until the time of services at 11 a.m.
Military services will be provided by the Flushing America Legion Post 366 and the Belmont County Council at 10:45 a.m., prior to funeral services. Burial will follow at Rock Hill Cemetery.
In lieu of flowers, commit to doing an act of kindness in honor of our Fitz. Memorial contributions may be made to the Flushing United Methodist Church, POB 54 Flushing, OH 43977.