John M. Shank, Jr.

John Martin Shank, Jr.

John Shank

John was a close friend at Yale and we were in the Army ROTC program together. We attended the weekly ROTC classes, and the thing that made the monthly drills held out near the Yale Bowl bearable, was that we rode to them on John’s BMW motorcycle. He was a great skier and was patient with me as I learned the ropes. He was on the weekend Ski Patrol at one of the Vermont ski resorts, which attests to his ability. In 1966, John and wife Jen were our neighbors at Ft. Lewis Washington in the Officer’s Housing, at which time my then wife and I spent many evenings with them. John was in the Engineering Branch of the Army and so he went to Vietnam in that capacity. We kept in touch over the years through Yale reunions and other events. A few years ago he returned to Vietnam, as I myself had planned to do before my close friend who was to accompany me passed away, and John shared with me photos of the remnants of airstrips he had built while “In Country” long ago, and described his current day interactions with the Vietnamese people. John was an absolutely grand fellow who will be greatly missed by all who were privileged to have known him.


Passed away on March 25, 2024, at the age of 80. Beloved husband and constant companion of Jen Shank for over 58 years. Loving father of Christopher Shank, Peter (Deneen) Shank, and Robin Shank Sanderson. Proud grandfather of Zade and Siree Shank; and Logan, Pierce, Sage, and Bryce Sanderson. Further survived by special family member Seonsook Park, other loving relatives, and dear friends.

Private services will be held. In honor of John’s dedicated work as a very active member of the Ice Age Trail Alliance, please consider a memorial donation to the organization at or to the Lake Park Friends Nature Committee, or to Early Music Now,