John Joseph Francis Meenan died peacefully in his home here in Mt. Shasta on Tuesday, February 13, 2018 after a long struggle with pancreatic cancer. He was 75. He is survived by his husband, Stephen Concklin, his daughter, Joanna Dunn, whom he adored, and by his precious grandchildren, Faith and Stran.
John was born in Rock Island, Illinois on July 5, 1942. His birth was accompanied by a fierce storm both inside and outside the hospital. The doctors conferred with his father telling him that the birth had run into complications. He had to choose between the life of his wife or that of the baby. He chose to protect the life of his wife. As preparations were moving along, there was a full power failure in the hospital resulting from the ongoing, ferocious storm. When the lights came back on John was already here.
John’s childhood was a rich time of growth as he was musical both vocally and instrumentally. He was an accomplished pianist. He discovered a very close relationship with God and nature that surrounded him. These interests led him to pursue more formal spiritual paths.
Initially he thought of becoming a priest. He attended seminary for a time but was attracted by what he felt was a greater calling and closeness with God. This desire for more of the eternal led him to become a Trappist Monk. But there was more. John left the monastery pledging that he would live fully in the world developing and learning so as to grow into the fullness that he knew was ahead of him. He wanted to be with people and make a difference in their lives. This led him to Albuquerque, New Mexico. At the University of New Mexico, he earned a BA in English.
Armed with his degree he moved to Fall River Mills, California where he taught for 30 years at Fall River Elementary School. He was attracted to the students who needed specialized teaching and love. It is there that he met his wife Gerri. They had a beautiful daughter named Joanna. But there was more to do and experience.
In 1991 John moved to Mt. Shasta to be with his partner Stephen. They were married in Victoria, British Columbia in 2009. Here in Mt. Shasta John fulfilled his desire to be close to the Eternal and nature that surrounded him and to make a difference in the lives of others.