John Mellin obituary photo
 
In Memory of

John Mellin

June 2, 1924 - March 31, 2015

Obituary




John A. “Jack” Mellin, a citizen-soldier and journalist-historian, died on March 31, 2015, at Charlestown in Catonsville Maryland. Jack was born in New York City on June 2, 1924. Four days after graduating from Regis Jesuit High School in Manhattan in June 1943 he enlisted in the US Army. After World War II he received a Master’s Degree from the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University and later attended the School of Advanced International Studies at The Johns Hopkins University.



During the war he served in England, Belgium and Germany,...



John A. “Jack” Mellin, a citizen-soldier and journalist-historian, died on March 31, 2015, at Charlestown in Catonsville Maryland. Jack was born in New York City on June 2, 1924. Four days after graduating from Regis Jesuit High School in Manhattan in June 1943 he enlisted in the US Army. After World War II he received a Master’s Degree from the Graduate School of Journalism at Columbia University and later attended the School of Advanced International Studies at The Johns Hopkins University.



During the war he served in England, Belgium and Germany, earning the Combat Infantry Badge and the Bronze Star Medal “for exemplary conduct in ground combat against the armed enemy” (February 28, 1945) and seven other service decorations. In 1978 he retired as a lieutenant colonel in Military Intelligence, receiving the Army Reserve Components Achievement Medal. As a civilian operations officer he served in the Central Intelligence Agency for 24 years, with assignments in the Middle East, Europe and Asia. At CIA headquarters in Langley Virginia he was Assistant to the Director of the CIA (responsible for public affairs). After he retired from the Agency in 1974 he logged extensive sailing experience in the Atlantic, and imported European sailing yachts to Annapolis.



From 1982 to 1995 he wrote over 700 weekly columns for the Annapolis Capital and the Maryland Gazette about little-known historical developments in the Chesapeake Bay area and “the good old days when railroads and steamboats delivered passengers and mail on time”, and military campaigns and installations during the Civil War. He also lectured at meetings of social and patriotic groups. To provide background and illustrations for feature articles in a variety of publications he collected all sorts of antique paper items (picture postcards, engraved stock certificates, photographs, maps, etc.).



He served on the Board of Directors of the Anne Arundel County Historical Society and the Ephemera Society of America (a group devoted to the study of “minor documents that chronicle bygone eras”). Among other organizations in which he was an active member are the Board of Trustees of the Fort Meade Museum, the Military Order of World Wars, and the Lost Patrol of Annapolis (50 retirees who meet in local taverns for “spirited discussions of whatever”).



Jack is survived by his wife Ethel who he married in Washington DC in April 1951. They lived in Foxhall Village in Northwest Washington and in Sherwood Forest on the Severn River from 1957 to 2002 near their three sons Daniel (Nancy), Matthew (Lynne) and Paul (Miriam), seven grandchildren and one great grandson. In 2002 Jack and Ethel moved to the Charlestown Retirement Community where they spent many happy years together with many friends.



The funeral service will be Monday April 6 at 10:00 am at Our Lady of Angels in Charlestown 711 Maiden Choice Lane Catonsville, preceded by a receiving of friends at 9:30 am. Interment will be at Arlington National Cemetery on a future date to be determined. Memorial contributions may be made to the Sherwood Forest Archives 21405 or The Anne Arundel Historical Society Linthicum 21090.