John K. Inman

May 21, 1928February 25, 2021
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Dr. John Keith Inman, 92, medical researcher and a laboratory head at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda for 40 years, died Feb. 25 at Friends House Retirement Community in Sandy Spring after a longtime illness from Parkinson’s Disease.

Dr. Inman, known as Jack to his many friends and family, had lived in Bethesda before moving to his Sandy Spring residence in 2020. During his long and successful tenure at NIH, from 1965 until 2005, he served in the Laboratory of Immunology as Chief of its Bioorganic Chemistry Section and was a senior investigator.

In 1978, he received the NIH Director’s Award for his studies in affinity chromatography and multispecific properties of antibodies. Dr. Inman authored or coauthored 130 publications and received five patents. His distinguished career began in 1956 at the Michigan Department of Health where he directed its biochemistry division and led a research program in blood derivatives for the American Red Cross. He directed a division of the Ortho Pharmaceutical Corporation from 1960 to 1963, then returned to basic research on a USPHS postdoctoral fellowship at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine from 1963 until 1965 in the Department of Biophysics before moving to the NIH in Bethesda.

He is recognized for his work in the areas of bioconjugate chemistry, affinity chromatography, antibody specificity, and design and synthesis of small molecule drugs to treat and prevent HIV infection. Dr. Inman’s colleagues remember him as a warm, enthusiastic friend and mentor who was always eager to discuss scientific research.

He graduated in 1950 from the California Institute of Technology and was awarded a doctorate degree in 1956 from Harvard University in its Division of Medical Sciences. His field was the study of the purification of blood plasma proteins. While at Caltech, he worked in the laboratory of Dr. Linus Pauling, a family friend who earlier had encouraged his scientific work and interest as a young teenager.

John Keith Inman was born in St. Louis, MO, to Chelsea Inman and Dorothy Keith Inman, and grew up in the suburb of Clayton. He married Jeanne Jaques of Massachusetts in 1954, who was a lab assistant at Harvard at the time.

Jack was a cheerful, loving family member, and friend to all. He was an avid reader of scientific, medical, and political news, and would bend the ear of anyone nearby to discuss the latest politics. He enjoyed amateur astronomy, playing the piano, puns and tongue-twisters, bird watching, and summer vacations with his family that included camping and beach strolling.

In addition to his wife of 66 years, Jeanne Jaques Inman of Friends House, he is survived by his children, Nancy Inman Villadsen of Clarksburg, Louise Inman Capon of Bethesda, and Keith Griscom Inman of Medford, Mass.; nine grandchildren, Juliet, Tom, Jackie, Phil, Andrew, Rya, Tarik, William, and Noah; two great-grandchildren, Robbie and Bridget; and the children of his beloved late sister Petty, Noni, Lisa and Phillip. . . . He will be sorely missed by all.

Contributions in John Inman’s memory can be made to the Parkinson Foundation of the National Capital Area (PFNCA), 8830 Cameron St., Suite 201, Silver Spring, MD 20910;

A virtual Quaker meeting to celebrate the life of John Inman will be held under the care of Bethesda Friends Meeting on Saturday April 10 at 3:00 PM Eastern. To get the Zoom link please contact Ross Capon at or another family member.


  • Jeanne Jaques Inman, Wife
  • Nancy Inman Villadsen, Daughter
  • Louise Inman Capon, Daughter
  • Keith Griscom Inman, Son
  • Chelsea Inman, Father (deceased)
  • Dorothy Keith Inman, Mother (deceased)
  • John is also survived by his nine grandchildren, Juliet, Tom, Jackie, Phil, Andrew, Rya, Tarik, William, and Noah; two great-grandchildren, Robbie and Bridget; and the children of his beloved late sister Petty, Noni, Lisa and Phillip.

  • Parkinson’s Foundation of the National Capital Area (PFNCA)


  • ZOOM Quaker Memorial Meeting

    Saturday, April 10, 2021


John K. Inman

have a memory or condolence to add?

Elizabeth (Ami} Zewudu

April 9, 2021

I will never forget how patient and kind Jack was,I remember him in many kind ways.He was happy with everything I did for him while caring for him.Im sure he is in a better place.

Nancy Villadsen

March 28, 2021

Dad had an air of charmed happiness doing the little things of life, even with Parkinson’s in his later years, with things as simple as putting out his pills or sharing a granola bar. He loved talking through all the details of an issue or activity, and subscribed to dozens of periodicals just because “if I learn one useful piece of information a year from each one of them, it’s worth the price.” Dad was very family-oriented – he loved each person for their own special ways, and liked nothing better than visits. And everyone was like family to him in his circle of friends and acquaintances.
I remember him as the most fun daddy ever, as small child – sitting on the living room floor every night after supper in our little Lansing house, building block structures, offering his puffed out cheeks to hit and make funny noises; also taking me to see my Easter chick at a farm nearby after it got too big to keep at home, feeding the next-door-neighbor’s cat cans of Puss-in-Boots. In DeWitt, MI, thrillingly bumpy sled rides over the field out back to gather hickory nuts that always spilled on the way home. In NJ, hunting for marbles which magically replenished themselves out back in the church's gravel driveway .
But then the years went by and I grew up and got busy with my life, and pretty much I just visited my parents for holidays and other family events. So, it was actually a very special time to reconnect with my dad and mom when they became disabled and, for several years, I was quite involved in their lives. Not having a regular job, I was blessed to be able to visit them in our old home a couple days a week and help support their ability to continue to live comfortably there.
Going forward, I will very much miss Dad's perennial cheerfulness, our ADL micro projects, and his loving interest in my life. But, I know he's in a really great place now, surrounded by those special, wonderful people who made him who he was, and that his kindly spirit is there for us still.

Lisa Floyd-Hanna

March 19, 2021

Uncle Jack! I have so many clear and wonderful memories of my godfather and uncle, though our family lived in Hawai’I and his in Bethesda. We couldn’t have been farther apart physically, but Uncle Jack made sure that we were always a tight family. Every Christmas Eve we would anxiously await the call from the Inmans, far down the crackling telephone line and so full of holiday spirit when Uncle Jack’s voice would come through. He and Mom (Petty) stayed very close over the years (sharing a laugh in 1986) and she always called in the recent years to tell me of her phone visits with her brother. When our Dad died in 1971, the Inmans had just returned to Bethesda from their family vacation in Hawai’i. I will never forget the look on Mom (Pettys) face when she saw him getting out of our neighbors car, returned immediately as he got the news, to guide us through that sad time. When my family moved to Massachusetts, Aunt Jeanne and Uncle Jack came to visit several times enroute to the Cape and they always were so delightful, playing with our children, supporting my early scientific career, and always, always, extending the meaning of family. He will be missed. Aloha, Uncle Jack. Lisa

Robert Isele

March 11, 2021

When we'd be visiting the Capons for a dinner or some other event and I was sitting in the dining room, I would sometimes hear this nice light jazzy tune coming from the piano in the living room. While it was not uncommon to hear Ross play a piece out of the blue, the fact that it was some old standard from the '30s or '40s always gave me a definitive clue as to who was playing - it would be Jack, standing over the keys (I don't think I ever saw him sitting at the piano) just having a nice reminiscence of a song from another place and time. Sometimes I knew the song, sometimes not - but it didn't matter - it was a joyous sound.

Phillip Floyd

March 9, 2021

Although we lived on opposite sides of the country, I always considered Uncle Jack an important part of my life. I knew him as kind, generous, interested in me, approachable, and really funny. He had a wonderful impact on me. When dad died unexpectedly, he dropped everything and flew to Hawaii to be with us. During that visit I would often grab my guitar and Uncle Jack would whistle. We developed these whistle-guitar duets. Improvising. He had a gorgeous whistle . . which is probably why he could compete in those bird-song contests. As I grew into adulthood without my father, Uncle Jack was always there for me with advice and support.
One vivid memory I have is from a visit to the Inman’s in Bethesda. It was Saturday afternoon and Uncle Jack sat down to his piano and began to improvise with harmonies. It was beautiful and my impression was he viewed his keyboard and harmonies as a mathematician might. Sweet music. I might as well’ve been listening to Keith Jarrett. Could have listened for hours.
Uncle Jack, the world is a better place for having had you. I’m certain you are whistling now. See you down the road.

Noni Floyd

March 8, 2021

My last birthday visit, on the short walk home from the Capons' to Jack & Jeanne's house. (Uncle Jack and I have the same birthday.)

Noni Floyd

March 8, 2021

Uncle Jack and I engrossed in Sudoku.

Juliet Isele

March 7, 2021

It has been wonderful looking through these photos from Grandpa Jack's life. His resemblance as a young man to my brother Tom is amazing. The biggest memory I have of Grandpa Jack from when I was a kid is that he got a camcorder in the 1980s and started videotaping all of our family gatherings. I thought camcorders were really cool, and he was the only one in my family who had one! The memory of him that stands out from my adult life is that his message at my Quaker wedding at Sandy Spring Friends Meeting in 2004 was one of only two messages that I remember the content of from that day. He spoke about how marriage involved the goods times, such as those he'd seen us have at family gatherings, but also persevering in the more challenging times in life. When I went to look for photos of him at our wedding reception, I found one that brought together both of these memories--him holding a camcorder and videotaping! He will be so greatly missed at these family gatherings.

Shiva Sobhani

March 7, 2021

What a distinguished life! I only had the pleasure of knowing his dear daughter Nancy and her family. His brilliant mind, compassionate heart, drive for excellence and service are evident in them all. May his memory be a blessing for the entire family.

David Zarembka

March 7, 2021

In 1988 the first time I went to Bethesda Meeting, I met Jack. Surprisingly he grew up in the Clayton, MO, the same town where I grew up. I knew the house he grew up in which was only about two blocks from mine. He graduated from the same high school as I did, although he is 15 years older than I am. We even had some of the same teachers. He told me of one of his teenage pranks he did where he got people to believe there was an UFO on the county court house grounds. So we gossiped and were "f(F)riends" every since.

Jack and Jeanne hired me repeatedly to fix things in their home. I once was painting some windows for them and it took me 45 minutes to paint the window. Jack said that it took him at least 2 hours to paint a window -- that, he said, was why he hired me to do it.

My most successful project with them when Tommy (my son) and I built a screened in porch for them. I was a great project and I built two more of them including one in my house later in St. Louis after I returned there to help take care of my elderly mother. According to Jeanne and Jack this porch was well used.


May 2019, 65th wedding anniversary


working jigsaw puzzle


Jack & Jeanne & Rusty, Dec. 27, 2012


With Cousins Debbie Charnasky and Ski


Skype party with sister Petty (in Hawaii), May 5, 2013


Jack's 85th birthday, May 21, 2013


Board game with grandsons Phil, William & Tom Capon, on 85th birthday, 5/21/2013


With Rusty, June 29, 2014