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Obituary (IN): John Watterson Wynne '55

Posted on 02/16/2018

John Watterson Wynne passed away peacefully at home on February 13, 2018. He was born in Indianapolis on January 21, 1933 to Hazel Black Wynne and Thomas Neil Wynne. John graduated from Broad Ripple High School and then went on to The United States Naval Academy where he graduated in 1955. He was commissioned a Lieutenant in the US Air Force and served in the Strategic Air Command as a navigator of KC97s until 1960 when he returned to Indianapolis. He worked at Chevrolet General Motors while attending The Indiana University McKinney Law School. After graduating with a Doctor of Jurisprudence, Order of the Coif, and Valedictorian of his 1963 Law School Class, he practiced law at Bose, McKinney & Evans, where he was a retired partner. He was a co-founder of Duke Realty Corporation and spent his business career in real estate development and served as both President and Chairman of the Board of Duke.

He married Barbara Smith Wynne on June 11, 1955 and they had six children: Thomas Neil Wynne III (deceased), Robert Stafford Wynne (Kathy), Gregory Pearson Wynne (Nancy), Mary Wynne Cox (Joe), John Watterson Wynne II, and Richard Reid Wynne (Sue). He was blessed with 17 grandchildren, who lovingly called him "Big Deal" and three great-grandchildren, numerous nephews and nieces who all live in Indianapolis.

He was also a firm believer in giving back to the community he loved so much. John was a 58-year member of St. Christopher's Episcopal Church in Carmel. He was an active member of the Jordan YMCA where he coached many youth basketball teams and utilized the Fitness Center. He served on Advisory Boards of the St. Vincent Hospital Foundation, Conner Prairie, and DePauw University. He was a member of the Indiana University's President's Circle as well as the John Paul Jones Club and the Leadership Club of the US Naval Academy. He was the proud donor of the John and Barbara Wynne Moot Court at the IU McKinney School of Law.

His life interests included reading military history and travelling to unique historical places worldwide. He bicycled most of the Eastern coastline of the United States and loved snow skiing, fly fishing and scuba diving. He loved sharing trips with friends and family. He took many of his seventeen grandchildren on trips around the world to teach them about other cultures. Whether it was with wit or with laughter there was always a lesson to learn from John. Family dinners and gatherings were among his favorite pastimes. He always had a dog during his long life and Trixee was his last constant companion.

He is survived by his sister-in-laws: Nancy K. Wynne and Patsy S. Kennedy; brother-in-law Pearson and Janie Smith and daughter-in-law, Jan Z. Wynne. He was preceded in death by sisters Jane Wynne Wright (William); Mary Wynne Morrison (Donald); Martha Wynne Burke (James); brother Thomas Neil Wynne Jr, and son Thomas Neil Wynne III and grandson, Cary Stafford Wynne.

A visitation will be held Friday, February 16, 2018 from 3-7 pm at Leppert Mortuary-Nora Chapel, 740 East 86th Street. A funeral service will be held at Saint Christopher's Episcopal Church, 1402 West Main Street, Carmel, IN at 1:00 pm on Saturday, February 17th.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the Jordan Family YMCA, 8400 Westfield Blvd, Indianapolis, IN 46240 or your favorite charity.

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Published in the The Indianapolis Star on Feb. 15, 2018