John Ingham Gaythwaite

  • Born: August 3, 1917
  • Died: August 29, 2019
  • Location: Peabody, Massachusetts

McDonald Funeral Home

19 Yale Avenue
Wakefield, MA 01880
Tel. (781) 334-9966

Tribute & Message From The Family

John Ingham Gaythwaite was born in West Lynn, MA to William Gaythwaite and Annis Oxley on 3 August 1917. He married Doris Rich in 1943 and following the end of WWII they built their home in Lynnfield, MA where they resided for 60 years and raised two sons, John W. and Gary G. Gaythwaite. John and Doris moved to Brooksby Village, Peabody, MA in 2005 and Doris died in 2011 after 68 years of harmonious and loving marriage. John died peacefully on 29 August 2019 at the age of 102 and will be sorely missed by his many friends and family members.

John grew up in West Lynn and helped run the family variety store from his high school years until he enlisted in the US Navy in 1942. He first served as Machinist Mate on an escort carrier in the North Atlantic where his task group received a Presidential Citation for sinking nine German U-Boats in one day and then transferred to a light cruiser bound for the Pacific where his ship was involved in many historic battles including; Enewetok, Ulithi, Leyte Gulf, Iwo-Jima and Okinawa and he watched the surrender ceremonies in Tokyo Harbor from the deck of his ship in September 1945. He worked for GTE Sylvania for 35 years and worked his way up to Manager of Marketing Manpower Development, retired in 1981 and continued to serve as a consultant until 1986. John and Doris enjoyed many bus trips together and he enjoyed assisting her with her doll collection hobby, building doll houses and going to doll shows. Most of all he cherished being together with his beloved wife and was the devoted caregiver in her final years.

John matriculated to Salem State College after retirement and earned a BA in General Studies at age 83 and subsequently a BS in Sociology and History at 85, both Cum Laude. He was active in the Aleppo Shriners and volunteered at the Shriners Burn Institute and as a fund raiser for the Shriners Hospitals via their annual football games for many years. He was also a volunteer greeter at the North Shore Cancer Center for over nine years. John stayed in touch with his many Lynnfield friends at the Lynnfield Senior Center breakfasts after moving to Brooksby and with his many new friends at Brooksby through their "coffee clutch". He maintained contact with his former Sylvania colleagues at their annual reunions. John, "Mr. Sunshine", was a gentleman with a positive outlook who always had something pleasant to say to others and most of all a kind and thankful man who was grateful for the life he led.

John leaves his two sons, John W. Gaythwaite and wife Michele R. Gaythwaite of Manchester, MA and Gary G. Gaythwaite of Brunswick, ME and two nieces, Annis Margo Legrow and Barbara Barnes and their families and many friends. The family expresses thanks to the staff of Brooksby Village Maple Grove Assisted Care Unit and to the Care Dimensions Team for their compassionate care of John during his final days.

Contributions in his memory may be made to; Care Dimensions, 75 Sylvan St., Suite B-102, Danvers, MA 01923 or

Condolences can be submitted to McDonald Funeral Home, Wakefield, online at;

A celebration of life ceremony will be held at Brooksby Village at a future date to be determined.

Condolence & Memory Journal

My sincere condolences to Gary, John and your families from the Gaythwaite family in Australia.

Posted by William Gaythwaite - Australia   September 23, 2019

Dear Michele: So sorry to hear of your father- in- law's passing. He lived a long, honorable life.

Posted by Nancy Waring    September 13, 2019

John & Gary,
Sad to hear of your Dad's passing. A good long life well lived. Hope all is well.
Dick Leverone

Posted by Dick Leverone    September 04, 2019

Dear John, Gary and family. Sorry to hear about your Fathers Passing. I'll always remember our morning chats in the Mcintosh Clubhouse. He loved taking an early morning drive in his mustang, especially with Doris.
May he rest in Peace.

Michael Boudreau
Former BBV Security

Posted by Michael Boudreau - Saugus, MA - Acquaintance   September 04, 2019

My sincere condolences to John and Gary. Your Dad was one of the kindest people I have ever met. I have great memories of him and your mom up at the lake. It appears he lead a full life, giving back to others, not a surprise. My thoughts and prayers are with you both. Stay well and be strong

Posted by Jack Kelly - Worcester, MA - Family Friend   August 30, 2019