John T. Toenes



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John Thomas Toenes, 64, died September 2, 2011 at Providence Hospital in Anchorage after a long illness.

John was born Aug. 21, 1947 to John Sr. and Joan (Ladnier) Toenes in Mobile, Alabama. He attended McGill Toolen High School and Spring Hill College, graduating in 1969. He then served in the Army and was honorably discharged in 1974 as a Captain.

On Aug. 30, 1975 John married Janet Gibson in Huntsville, Alabama. The next day the two began a road trip to Anchorage for John’s new job. In 1978, John and Janet moved to Eagle River to the home they built together.

John worked for the Directorate of Public Works for U.S. Army Alaska from 1975 through 2002, serving as an engineer and later Deputy Director. In 2002, John began work at the Missile Defense Agency, Site Activation Command on Fort Richardson. He retired from federal service in June 2005.

Friends and family remember John as exceptionally kind, generous, friendly, and funny. He was a loving husband and father, and a great friend. John moved to Alaska to escape the Alabama heat and to take advantage of the many outdoors opportunities, especially hunting and fishing.

An entertainer at heart, John was a talented trumpet player, performing professionally in Alabama and later in Alaska. He was active with the Boy Scouts and loved taking young people on outdoor adventures. John was also an active member of St. Andrew Parish in Eagle River, including being a founding member and eventually a 4th degree Knight in the Knights of Columbus, John A. Forsting Council.

John is survived by his wife of 36 years, Janet (Gibson) Toenes; son and daughter-in-law Justin and Patricia Toenes; daughter and son-in-law Emily (Toenes) and Paul Morrison, all of Eagle River; brother Kevin Toenes and family of Buford, Georgia; and numerous extended family.

A funeral Mass was held at 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 8 at Saint Andrew Catholic Church in Eagle River, with a viewing and reception immediately after. Burial will be at Fort Richardson National Cemetery at a later date.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to the Alzheimer’s Disease Resource Agency of Alaska.

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