Nelsen Williamsburg


John Charles Marsh

September 17, 1933July 14, 2021

Dr. John Charles Marsh of Williamsburg, VA died on July 14, 2021 at Hospice House. Born on September 17, 1933 to Dr. Charles F. and Chloro T. Marsh, he was a native of Williamsburg. He was a graduate of Matthew Whaley High School. He was a cum laude graduate of Deerfield (Mass.) Academy, the College of William and Mary and Yale University School of Medicine.

At William and Mary, he was awarded the Botetourt Medal (highest average in graduating class) and at Yale, he was awarded the Parker prize (best practitioner). Following internship and residency in internal medicine on the Harvard Medical Service at Boston City Hospital, he served two years in the U.S. Public Health Service as a Clinical Associate at the National Cancer Institute in Bethesda, MD. He then spent four years as a clinical and research fellow in hematology at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. From 1967 until 1998, he was a member of the faculty of Yale University School of Medicine, retiring as Professor of Medicine and Lecturer in Pharmacology. He was one of the founding members of the Section of Medical Oncology in the Department of Internal Medicine and the Yale Cancer Center. Research interests included hematopoietic stem cells and their response to cancer chemotherapeutic agents, and cancer clinical trials.

He was the author or co-author of more than 200 publications. Among his administrative responsibilities were service as Director of the Yale GI cancer unit, Yale Principal Investigator and a committee chairman for both the Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group and the Gastrointestinal Tumor Study Group. He served as acting Director of the Cancer Center and Chief of Oncology and Hematology at the West Haven VA Hospital. He was one of the founding editors of the Journal of Clinical Oncology and was on the editorial board of six other medical journals. He was a grant reviewer for the American Cancer Society and the National Cancer Institute. He was a Faculty Research Associate of the American Cancer Society and served as chairman of the Professional Education Committee, Board Member and President of the South Central Connecticut Unit and in the same capacities at the Connecticut Division of the ACS. He was a Fellow of the American College of Physicians and a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the American Society of Hematology, American Association for Cancer Research, the International Society of Experimental Hematology, and the American Federation for Clinical Research. He was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Omicron Delta Kappa, Kappa Sigma, and Alpha Omega Alpha.

Following his retirement from Yale in 1998, he and his wife moved to Williamsburg. He was a volunteer physician at Olde Towne Medical Center and the Dalton Oncology Clinic at the Medical College of Virginia in Richmond, where he was adjunct Professor of Medicine. He was active in the Christopher Wren Association, serving as student, instructor, chairman of the College Relations Committee, board member, and Board Chairman. He was a member of the Swem Library Board at the College of William and Mary, and received the Alumni Service award in 2008. He was a member of the Williamsburg United Methodist Church and its choir, and the Middle Plantation Club, serving as president of the latter. He was a member of the board of All Together and the Williamsburg Civil War Roundtable, of which he was president. He was a member of the Williamsburg Reunion Committee and chairman in 2004.

He was predeceased by his devoted wife of 62 years, Carol B. Marsh. He is survived by his son David C. Marsh and his wife Linda of North Haven, CT., his daughter, Ginny C. Haight and her husband Steven Haight of Conifer, CO, and his son, John R. Marsh and his wife, Kathleen Moore of Decatur, GA. He is also survived by six grandchildren, one great-grandchild, and his sister, Nancy M. Stowe of Appleton, WI.

Funeral services will be held at 11:00 AM on July 23, 2021 at the Williamsburg United Methodist Church and interment will be at the Williamsburg Memorial Park. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to the John Marsh ’59 Scholarship at Yale University School of Medicine, 333 Cedar Street, New Haven, CT 06510, The Williamsburg United Methodist Church, or the College of William and Mary.


  • Funeral Service

    Friday, July 23, 2021


John Charles Marsh

have a memory or condolence to add?

Rohan Boyapati

July 15, 2021

Dr. Marsh and I would speak for hours every Friday for a few months during the pandemic. I always enjoyed his unique perspectives on life, the memories we shared talking about how different W&M was during his time there and during my time there, our conversations about cancer research or medical schools, and even his advice on how to be smooth with girls. Unfortunately we never had the opportunity to meet in person despite all of our plans to do so.

My condolences to his family and those he touched.

Thank you Dr. Marsh, hope you are killing it in Bingo up there.

Robert and Phyllis Edwards

July 14, 2021

Our family rented the Marsh summer house on Grindstone Island for many years and when John and Carol decided to sell it we bought it. Each summer when we come for 5 months we daily think of them and our close friendship. All the members of the Thurso Bay Assc are now all departed except Bev Pope. I often sent John pictures of things on Grindstone and he was very appreciative.