Obituary Notices and Memorials

GARDNER, John Thomas
GARDNER, John Thomas July 7, 1928 ~ May 11, 2012 John was born in Pittsburg, Kansas the only child of Francis and Sybil Gardner, where he graduated from Pittsburg High School. He entered the Navy at 17??? years old where he proudly served as a medic and played in bands to entertain the sailors and friends also playing taps for funerals. He returned home and graduated in 1952, from Pittsburg State University with a teaching credential earning his tuition by playing at numerous gigs. In 1959, he earned a M.S. from Kansas State University. He married and moved out to California for the good life where he began investing in run-down homes that he learned to rebuild and rent out. In Mojave he taught music at the elementary school from 1960, until earning his Doctorate Degree from Walden University in 1975, and transferred to Mojave High School where he taught business courses and eventually computers to many children of his music students retiring from Mojave Unified in 1989. Dr. Gardner also taught at Antelope Valley College where he met and married Patty with whom he celebrated their 43rd anniversary in October 2011. John opened a real estate business in Mojave in 1960, and was active in the community in numerous organizations including a lifetime member of Mojave Chamber of Commerce and the Kern County Aging Council. He was most proud to work with the SpaceShipOne Rockets Boosters and cleaning up Mojave anticipating world wide visitors. Patty and John worked together daily in the office up until John's unexpected death. John is also survived by daughters Clorinda Dodds of Arizona, Patrice Basham of Oregon, Debby Wyatt of Apple Valley, Melissa Bowen of Kansas, Michele Behrens-Slade of Rosamond, and Melanie Gardner of Oklahoma. John and Patty's only son Curtis preceded him in death. He was blessed with 13 grand children and 15 great-grand children. John was buried in his home town Pittsburg beside his parents.

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