John Charles Potter III

July 17, 1946January 26, 2023
Obituary of John Charles Potter III
John Charles Potter III, of Grand Rapids, has gone to be with his beloved wife Ellen. He passed away peacefully on January 26, 2023, surrounded by family and friends at the age of 76, after a year-long battle with colon cancer. He is preceded in death by his wife of 30 years, Ellen Marie Naimo Potter. He is survived by his son Bradford (Wendi) Potter, and his 3 grandchildren, Alexis, Hailey, and Braeden Potter, and many very dear friends. John was the only child of Edgar and Lillian Potter, born on July 17th, 1946, in Lansing, Michigan. He graduated Central High School, of Grand Rapids, in 1964, and joined the United States Navy. His service in the Navy took him all over the world as a Petty Officer 1st Class on the nuclear submarine, USS Thomas A. Edison. John also served on the USS Shark, as well as the USS George W. Carver, where he performed as a mechanical operator and engine room nuclear supervisor. Upon his completion of active duty in the US navy, during the Vietnam war, John entered the Navy Reserves, serving from 1973-1979. During that time, John settled in Grand Rapids, where he began a 30-year career at the city of Grand Rapids Waste Treatment Plant. There, he was a Laboratory Technician and Water Quality Control Investigator. In 1979 through 1989, John's commitment to the US military led him to join the US Army Reserves. There, he pursued combat medic training, followed by a nursing degree. He served as Coordinator at Combat Medic School 394th Station Hospital. In addition to his military and career accomplishments, John was an equally dedicated father to his son Bradford, and husband to his wife Ellen. He enjoyed gardening with friends. He was an avid modeler, specializing in military aircraft. He loved his many shih-tzu dogs. He spent countless hours with close friends, telling stories, appreciating music, and enjoying film noir. There will be a Memorial Gathering on March 17th, 2023, held at Reyers North Valley Chapel, 2815 Fuller Ave. NE, Grand Rapids, from 1pm - 4pm, immediately followed by military honors and bagpipes. The family looks forward to sharing memories of John and celebrating his life. They ask, in lieu of flowers, to honor his memory with donations to the Kent County Animal Shelter, Lemmen - Holton Cancer Pavilion, or any other charity of your choice.

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