John J. Gill
April 11, 1932 – March 31, 2020
John J. Gill of Rocky River, OH passed away peacefully at his home March 31, 2020 at the age of 88 of a heart attack after a long battle with Parkinson's, with his wife by his side. Beloved husband of 60 years to Joan (nee Masterson). Dearest father of Brian of Westlake, OH, Beth Gill-Oldford (Tom) of Shaker Heights, OH and Megan Gill-Kopp (Dr. Franz) of San Diego, CA. Cherished grandfather to Sarah Oldford. Dear brother to Jane Braun (John (dc)), Tom (Mary) Gill, Ellen White (Jerry (dc)), Joan Miller (deceased) (William (dc)) and Mary Alice Gill (deceased Dear brother in law to Kathy Motz (dc), Tom Masterson (Marilyn) of San Francisco, CA and Bob Masterson(dc)(Althea) of Saco, ME.
John was a Korean War Veteran, proud alumni of St. Ignatius High School class of 1950. He served as a Cleveland Firefighter while attending Cleveland Marshall Law School where he served as president of his class of 1962. Legendary trial lawyer in Cleveland for 55 years, defended John Demjanjuk in Israel in a trial that lasted 18 months along with many other high profile cases. He was a former Tribune of Delta Theta Phi Law Fraternity, member of the Anchor Club, Italian American Brotherhood (Trustee Emeritus), Ohio Supreme Court, Certified Document Examiner and Certified Graphoanalist, 1978 Co-Chair of the St. Patrick's Day parade, a founding board member of the Mayo Society of Greater Cleveland and former Chief Council to the State of Ohio Public Utilities Commission, former Prosecutor City of Brook Park, Ohio. Along with his wife Joan, he was a founding member and Council of NAMI Cuyahoga County (now known as NAMI of Greater Cleveland). They were staunch advocates for the mentally ill and contributed greatly to the cause to erase stigma. John was instrumental in helping form a mental illness court in Common Pleas Court. Along with Joan he supported her effort in introducing the "CIT", Crisis Intervention Team program to our police forces which is still in place today in Cleveland. In the words of his children and friends "great friend, kind humble and brilliant gentleman, Master story teller, coach to all three of his children and their friends, loving, funny, caring, amazingly kind, a true mentor to all." He helped so many people along the way and changed some people's lives forever.
Memorial Mass will be celebrated at a later date to be announced at St. Raphael Church, 525 Dover Center Rd. Bay Village, OH. Followed by a Celebration of Life gathering. Please join us there. In lieu of flowers the family suggests Memorial Contributions be made to Robert Masterson Nursing Scholarship, c/o Northern Light Mercy Hospital Development Office, 144 State St. Portland, ME 04101 Attention : Susan Rouilland and In Motion for Parkinson's, 4829 Galaxy Pkwy. Warrensville Hts. OH 44128.
MEMORIAL MASS FOLLOWED BY CELEBRATION OF LIFE TO BE ANNOUNCED
John J. Gill
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April 14, 2020
Dear Gill Family,
Please accept our deepest sympathies on John’s passing. His legacy lives on in you and all whose lives he touched.
NAMI Greater Cleveland