Close your eyes, let the music set you free. Mardi Gras is the love of life. It’s the harmonic convergence of food, our music, our creativity, our eccentricity, and our neighbors. John R. Otterson was inspired and loved to change the world with these things. He enthusiastically took on his years with a larger-than-life, magnetic, and bubbling personality. His infectious laugh reached your core and it naturally drew others into his orbit. You never left John’s company without a smile on your face.
John’s zeel took him down the road on motorcycles, down the mountain on skis, and down the Jersey shore to the beach. On Friday, July 7, 2023…The stars were shining and the earth was scented. The gate of the garden creaked and a footstep grazed the sand… fragrant. John entered and fell into Forever’s arms at the age of 83.
John’s days began in the cradle of Liberty, Philadelphia just after the start of WWII. He had faced adversity with his health since he was a young man and through his adult life. John had made his home as a Swedesboro neighbor for many years, enjoyed time in his vacation home in New Orleans, and had spent his last months in Ventnor. He made his career in research and worked at AstraZeneca in Wilmington, DE. His passion was touched and he invested his energy into the arts, theater, Opera, and music of all genres. John’s time was best spent in the company of his friends and neighbors. He would rent a place at the shore for the summer with his friends. John loved to teach and play mahjong and especially loved Mardi Gras. With his friends, he would create and design themed Mardi Gras costumes, hand make glass jewelry and dishes. During his later years, John was a tour guide at Wheaton Glass in Millville. John will fondly be remembered as an inspiring intellectual with an enthusiasm to enrich the lives of those around him.
John is the son of the late John F. & his late wife Vera M. (nee Mills) Otterson. He is survived and will be sadly missed by his sister Deborah Otterson.
Relatives, friends, and neighbors are invited to come together to remember, celebrate and pay tribute to John. We’ll take comfort in each other on Wednesday morning between 11:00 am and 12:00 pm at Creran Celebration Etherington & Creran Funeral Homes 400 White Horse Pike, Oaklyn where a remembrance ceremony will begin at 12:00 pm. Everyone is invited to continue to remember John in a reception following ceremonies at the Kove Restaurant 20 W. Atlantic Ave. Audubon.
As an expression of sympathy and in lieu of flowers, contributions can be made to The Academy of Vocal Arts, 1920 Spruce St., Philadelphia, PA 19103 https://avaopera.org/ or The Metropolitan Opera House 30 Lincoln Center Plaza, New York, NY 10023 www.metopera.org
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