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John E. Skillman III
"John"

Company A-2

16 Jun 1939 - 10 Jun 2014

Place of Death: Tampa, FL

Interment: Myrtle Hill Cemetery, Tampa, FL

It is with great sorrow and regret that I must notify you of the death of our classmate, John Skillman, on June 10, 2014, in Tampa, FL after a long, courageous battle with prostate cancer. 

John is survived by his wife, Ellie; son Kenneth and his wife Kumi; daughters Lee Fleming and her husband Scott and Paige Briscoe and her husband Ray; and grandchildren Casey Fleming, Bailey Fleming, Olivia Skillman, and Natalie Skillman. 

A memorial service will be held at 11 am, 23 June 2014, at Palma Ceia Presbyterian Church, 3501 W San Jose Street, Tampa, FL.  There will reception in the church Fellowship Hall following the service.  Interment with a Masonic Graveside Service will immediately follow at Myrtle Hill Cemetery in Tampa. 

Condolences may be sent to Ellie at 5300 Bayshore Boulevard, Apt B4, Tampa, FL  33611-4103. 

At John’s request, in lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his name to the Skillman Family Association, Inc. c/o Gregory E. Skillman, Treasurer, 43 Cambridge Lane, Lincolnshire, IL  60069-3104 to be used for the establishment of a scholarship program.  In 2012 John founded the Skillman Family Association, Inc. as a forum for the research, collection, and preservation of materials regarding the history and genealogy of the Skillman Family in North America. 

Well done, John.  Be thou at peace.

Remembrances:

Class Memorial Pages\A-2 John Skillman.pdf

Obituaries:

SKILLMAN, III, John E., 74, of Tampa and Copper Hill, Virginia, passed away at home on Tuesday, June 10, 2014 after a long and courag-eous battle with prostate cancer. He was the son of Mr. & Mrs. John E. Skillman, Jr. of Upper Montclair, NJ, and the grandson of Dr. & Mrs. John E. Skillman of Montclair, NJ, and Mr. & Mrs. J. Starr Webber of Salem, VA. He is survived by his loving wife of 52 years, Eleanor, and three children, Kenneth Robert Skillman and wife Kumi of Lutz, FL; Lee Ann Fleming and husband Scott of Tampa, FL and Frisco, CO; and Paige Elizabeth Briscoe and husband Ray of Huntersville, NC. He is also survived by four granddaughters, Casey Lee Fleming, Bailey Ann Fleming, Olivia Sumindee Skillman, and Natalie Seyansa Skillman, numerous cousins, and Abby, the best dog ever. John was raised in Upper Montclair, NJ, and in 1961 he married the former Eleanor M. Conn of Montclair. They relocated their family to Tampa in 1972 and built a second home in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia in 2002. John was graduated in 1961 from the United States Military Academy at West Point, NY, and was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant in the U.S. Army. He graduated from the Artillery Officers Basic Course at Ft. Sill, OK, and earned his parachute wings at Ft. Benning, GA. He achieved the rank of 1 st Lieutenant with the 24th Infantry Division Artillery in Munich, Germany, and the rank of Captain with the New Jersey Army National Guard in Morristown, NJ. Following his active military service, John spent forty years in the securities and investment business, serving as a Vice President with Reynolds Securities, PaineWebber, SunTrust Bank of Tampa Bay, and J&W Seligman. In 2002, he joined Flippin, Bruce & Porter, an investment management firm in Lynchburg, V A, where he was responsible for marketing in eight southeastern states, Texas, and Puerto Rico. He retired from Flippin, Bruce & Porter in July 2007. In 2000 he earned the designation Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA) after completing a program sponsored by the Investment Management Consultants Association and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. In 1967, John began what became a life-long interest in genealogy, and he had more than 20,000 names of relatives and their families in his database. He was a seventh great-grandson of Thomas Skillman, who came to this country from England in 1664. Based on his third great-grandfather, Jacob Skillman, who served in the New Jersey Militia, John joined the Tampa Chapter, Sons of the American Revolution, in 2004 and served as president in 2012 and 2013. He was a dual member of the Fincastle Resolutions Chapter, Sons of the American Revolution, in Roanoke, VA where he proudly served in the Color Guard. John was also a member of the National Huguenot Society and The Order of the Founders and Patriots of America. In 2012 he founded the Skillman Family Association, Inc. as a forum for the research, collection, and preservation of materials regarding the history and genealogy of the Skillman Family in North America. John was very pleased to have two published articles on genealogy; one in The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record and one in The New York Researcher. John was active in the Mendham Area (NJ) Jaycees from 1966 to 1972 where he served as president during the 1969-1970 year. From 1996 to 2004, he served as a Local Board Member of the Selective Service System in Tampa. He was a former member of The Tampa Club and a member of Palma Ceia Presbyterian Church. He was a Freemason and a member of Taylor Lodge #23 AF &AM in Salem, V A, with a dual membership in Hillsborough Lodge #25 F &AM in Tampa.The family would like to thank the doctors and staff at Moffitt Cancer Center for the excellent medical care they provided John over the past three years, and also all of the LifePath Hospice nurses for the comfort and support they gave John and the family during his final days. A Memorial Service will be held on Monday, June 23rd at lla.m. at Palma Ceia Presbyterian Church, 3501 W San Jose St, Tampa, FL followed by a reception in the Fellowship Hall. Interment with a Masonic Graveside Service will take place immediately following at Myrtle Hill Cemetery. At John's request, in lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his name to the Skillman Family Association, Inc. c/o Gregory E. Skillman, Treasurer, 43 Cambridge Lane, Lincolnshire IL 60069-3104 to be used for the establishment of a scholarship program. All donations are tax deductible.

Published in TBO.com on June 12, 2014

Taps Memorial Article:

John E. Skillman III 1961

Cullum No. 23375-1961 | June 10, 2014 | Died in Tampa, FL
Cremated. Interred in Myrtle Hill Cemetery, Tampa, FL


John Earle Skillman III was the only child of John Earle Skillman Jr. and Nellie Ruth Webber. John was born in Harrisburg, PA, but soon after his birth the family moved to his father’s hometown of Montclair, NJ, where John was raised and attended public school.

Every summer, John and his parents would travel to Salem, VA to visit his mother’s family, often stopping at Gettysburg and Lexington along the way. When it came time to pick a college, he applied to VMI and was accepted. At his father’s suggestion, he also applied to West Point and received a principal appointment. He entered the Academy on July 2, 1957. Shortly before high school graduation he met and began dating Eleanor (Ellie) Conn, the girl who would become his wife for almost 53 years. They were married on July 15, 1961.

John was enthusiastic about a career as an Army officer, but he would often say that a “firstie” year economics course derailed his plans. Each cadet was given a paperback book on the stock market and each room received a three-month subscription to the Wall Street Journal. About the same time, John unexpectedly inherited some shares of stock which peaked his interest in the market. He devoured the book and read the Journal every day.

He was commissioned into the Artillery branch and, after completing the Basic Course and Airborne School, reported to the 24th Division Artillery in Munich, Germany. He was assigned to the 5th Battalion, 92nd Artillery and served as forward observer, battery executive officer, battery commander, and assistant S3. The years in Germany were filled with making many new and lifelong friends, travelling as much as possible, and the birth of two children, Kenneth Robert in 1963 and Lee Ann in 1964. The stock market continued to lure John. After reading many more books on the market and completing a correspondence course, he made the difficult decision to resign his commission and pursue his desire to become a stockbroker. The family settled in New Jersey, and in 1969 a third child, Paige Elizabeth, was born.

Over the four decades in his investment career John was a stockbroker and branch manager but spent the last 25 years as a marketing representative for various investment products. He called on brokers throughout the Southeastern states, Texas, and Puerto Rico and often stated that he was one of the lucky few people in this world who absolutely loved his job. In 2000 he earned the designation of Certified Investment Management Analyst (CIMA) upon completion of a program sponsored by the Investment Management Consultants Association and the Wharton School.

Having lived in Florida since 1972, the thought of spending summers in a cooler climate was very appealing, and a few years before his retirement John found property just off of the Blue Ridge Parkway near Roanoke, VA, which became the setting for their mountain house. The home in Virginia was a wonderful gathering place for family and friends, and some of John’s happiest moments were spent taking the grandkids on his beloved John Deere “Gator” for rides around the neighborhood or enjoying a glass of wine in front of a roaring fire in the fireplace.

John was concerned that he would become bored in retirement but that proved to be anything but true. He retired just after his 68th birthday and immediately immersed himself in many activities and organizations. His interest in genealogy had begun many years earlier and he had collected over 20,000 names of relatives in his database. John was a seventh great-grandson of Thomas Skillman who came from England in 1664. In 2012 John founded the Skillman Family Association, Inc., which served as a forum for the preservation of materials regarding the history and genealogy of the Skillman family. He published two articles on genealogy: one in The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record and one in The New York Researcher. He became active in findagrave.com, entering memorials on over 400 deceased friends and relatives and also participated in their volunteer photo program, taking photos of requested gravestones for relatives in places too distant for them to visit the cemetery. His third great-grandfather, Jacob Skillman, served in the New Jersey Militia, allowing John to join the Sons of the American Revolution. John served as Tampa Chapter president in 2012 and 2013 and was a dual member of the Fincastle Resolutions Chapter in Roanoke, VA, where he served in the Color Guard. He always enjoyed helping others trace their roots to find the connection that would allow membership in the SAR. One month before his passing, by sheer determination, he attended the monthly meeting and proudly received his 10-year pin. From 1996 to 2004 he served as a Local Board Member of the Selective Service System in Tampa.

John was a man who lived each day of his life to the fullest. He wrote and published his autobiography and a book on his ancestors as a legacy to his descendants. He was active in Freemasonry, with membership in Masonic Lodges both in Virginia and Florida. Although he did not remain in the military, throughout his life John kept close ties with West Point and always felt a strong sense of pride to have been a graduate. In the words of a classmate, John was a loving husband and father as well as a loyal citizen and discriminating gentleman. He was demanding and knowledgeable and loved his country, serving it both as a soldier and a civilian. Well done, John! Be Thou at Peace.

— His wife and family