VENICE, FLA./SWANTON – Remembering John Joseph Paxman, who passed away peacefully after a long illness in Venice, Fla. John is survived by the love of his life Diane Paxman of Venice and three children — John T (Cathy) of West Palm Beach, Fla., Holly (Jeff) of Princeton, N.J., and Bill (Melanie) of Lutz, Fla. Also grieving his loss are brother Larry Paxman (Pat) of Swanton, Vt., and sister Joan Hayden (Robert) of Venice, Fla., and Quechee, Vt.

John loved his three amazing grandchildren with a passion; enjoyed spoiling them and proudly followed their academic and athletic pursuits: Hayden Paxman (22), Cecile “CeCe” Gibb (12), and Sam Gibb (10).

Spending his early life in Swanton, John graduated from St. Anne Academy, playing multiple sports, including his favorite — baseball. He served as an altar boy for 12 years, was an Eagle Scout, worked for the family’s business — K. P. Paxman Plumbing & Heating, and stocked and delivered groceries at Prouty’s Market. Even in recent years he often spoke about his life in Swanton, reminiscing about the fun times with friends and summers at the family camp in Highgate.

He loved to tell stories about how he started driving at age 13 and learned from his dad how to fix almost anything. John obtained a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Chicago Technical College. He served in the Navy as a Seabee spending time in California, Guam and Okinawa. John enjoyed a long and successful career in the steel industry, working in Maine, Mississippi, Georgia, and Alabama, holding positions with Cives Steel, Owen of Georgia, and Qualico Steel. He took great pride in his work and liked to point out the many landmark buildings in Atlanta and elsewhere, which he had helped construct.

John married Diane Ferland in 1962. They had known each other since high school and spent 58 years together raising their three children. Both were extremely supportive of the other’s career and hobbies, allowing them to travel and enjoy living in multiple places over the years. They are members of Epiphany Cathedral in Venice.

John was proud of his Native American heritage and had a great sense of fun. He loved playing golf and passed his passion on to his children, resulting in many a family holiday on the links. Skiing at Sugarloaf Mountain, Maine, was another way to gather the family together. Throughout the years, he enjoyed socializing with his golfing friends in Augusta, Maine, Cleveland, MS, and Savannah, Ga. He was a member of Plantation Golf and Country club in Venice.

A celebration of his life will be held at a later date in Vermont. Donations in his memory may be made to Tidewell Hospice, 5955 Rand Blvd Sarasota, FL. 34238-9989.

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