The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Obits

February 27, 2014

John W. Cormier

Breaux Bridge, La. — John Wilton Cormier, 95, died Thursday, Feb. 20, 2014, at his home in Breaux Bridge, La.

He was born Dec. 8, 1918, in Parks, La. He attended Breaux Bridge High School and married Kathryn Joslin of Joplin, Mo., on Aug. 11, 1943. She preceded him in death in 2004.

He joined the United States Marine Corps in 1936, following the basic course of instruction at Camp Beauregard, La. He qualified as a pistol marksman and gun range finder operator and served aboard the U.S.S. Wyoming from Jan. 1938 to Dec. 1939. During World War II, he served as a bugler and an anti-aircraft machine gun crewman in the Pacific aboard the U.S.S. Springfield. Sgt. Cormier was honorably discharged in Nov. 1945. After the war, under the G.I. Bill, he studied business at Strayer College in Washington D.C.

He worked as a guard at the Library of Congress in Washington D.C. before and after the war. In 1972, the library's information bulletin noted his presence in the Capitol Rotunda when he and other members of the library's special police force paid their respect to the memory of J. Edgar Hoover a library employee before his career in the FBI as the lawman's body lay in state. His favorite vacation spot was his mothers kitchen. Captain Cormier retired from the Library of Congress in 1973.

After the Cormier's retired (Kathryn Cormier also retired from the Library of Congress) they moved to Joplin, Mo. and Mr. Cormier regularly engaged his father-in-law, William E. Joslin, in games of checkers. Never a casual dresser, he rarely appeared in public without a tie, even years after retirement when mowing the lawns of elderly relatives. Never in a hurry but always punctual, he collected wristwatches and mantel clocks without obsessing over the nature of time. A quiet man, he never demanded respect, but inspired it just the same.

In addition to his wife, Mr. Cormier was preceded in death by his parents, Aubin and Edith Hebert Cormier; his brothers, Gussie and Leroy Cormier; and his sister, Jeannette Broussard.

Survivors include, three sisters-in-law; and one brother-in-law, Ann Cormier, of Maine, Ga., Ann Joslin, of Columbia, Mo. and Ermanell and Muryl Olinger, of Houston, Texas; 17 nieces and nephews; and special friend, Levie Sonnier of Breaux Bridge.

The family thanks his caregiver, Myrtle Lasseigne, and the members of the Amedisys Hospice of Breaux Bridge.

A memorial service will be held at Ulmer Funeral Home, Carthage, Mo., at 2 p.m. Saturday, March 1, with interment immediately following at Powers Cemetery, east of Diamond.

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