John Richard Fondriest, of Westerville, Ohio, beloved husband and father, avid outdoorsman, and steadfast friend, passed away peacefully at home surrounded by his family on Friday, July 17, 2020. He was 84.
Dick was born on May 21, 1936, in Dennison, Ohio, to the late Emanuel Ludwig Fondriest and Eva Louise (Porotti) Fondriest. He graduated from St. Mary’s High School in Dennison in 1954, and he married Nancy Clara Migoni on July 1, 1961, in Cincinnati, Ohio.
Dick’s professional career spanned four decades. He got his start in aviation at the Harry Clever Field in New Philadelphia, Ohio in 1955, working for Lake Central Airlines. As the airline grew and expanded he rose through the ranks, serving as station manager at the Wheeling-Ohio County Airport in Wheeling, West Virginia. In 1966 he moved to Washington National Airport in Arlington, Virginia with the advent of the jet age before retiring as the Station Manager for USAirways at John Glenn International Airport in Columbus, Ohio. He also served in the U.S. Army from 1959 to 1961, stationed at Fort Knox, Kentucky. Throughout his life, Dick loved working with his hands, whether working in the yard, going hunting or fishing, or tinkering in the garage or at his basement workbench.
Dick is preceded in death by his brother Francis Frederick and sister Thelma Marie Peterson. He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Nancy, son Richard Charles and daughter-in-law Nancy (Comparin) of Alexandria, Virginia and son Steven Michael and daughter-in-law Elisabeth (Morgan) of Washington, D.C.; and grandsons Jacob Anton, Joseph Thomas, and Joshua Dylan of Alexandria, Virginia. He is also survived by his sister, Carol Ann Chiu of Westerville, Ohio and Naples, Florida, and numerous nieces and nephews.
A mass of Christian Burial will be offered for Dick on Monday, July 27, 2020, at the Immaculate Conception Roman Catholic Church in Dennison, Ohio at 10:00am. Interment will follow the service in the St. Mary’s Cemetery.
The family would like to thank the many special people who cared for Dick physically and spiritually over the past year, in particular the nurses and staff at the James Cancer Hospital at the Ohio State University, Mount Carmel Hospice, and Visiting Angels of Central Ohio. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to either the Mount Carmel Foundation - Mount Carmel Hospice Fund (6150 East Broad Street, Columbus, Ohio, 43213) or the Catholic Foundation - St. Mary/Dennison High School Class of ’54 Endowment Fund (257 East Broad Street, Columbus, Ohio, 43215).