John ‘Howard’ Garrett, 79, rode around Williamsburg in his 1965 Ford Mustang with the top down

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John "Howard" Garrett
John “Howard” Garrett

John “Howard” Garrett, of Williamsburg, beloved husband, father and grandfather, died July 16, 2015, surrounded by his family. He was 79.

Howard was born on Sept. 27, 1935, to Nelson and Mary Garrett and grew up on a farm in Pennsylvania. He was preceded in death by his parents and older sister, Doris Dickerson.

Howard completed undergraduate and pharmacy school at Ohio Northern in 1958 where he was also a member of Kappa Psi. He met and married the love of his life, Helen Lynch. They moved to Elizabeth City, North Carolina in 1968 where Howard worked as a registered pharmacist for many years, ultimately becoming district manager for People’s Drug.

Howard and Helen were very active in the community and attended Holy Family Catholic Church. Howard was a member of the Jaycees and eventually served as president of the local Rotary Club.

After 33 years with People’s Drug, Howard and Helen moved to Hershey, Pennsylvania where Howard was the director of human resources for CVS. Howard never met a stranger, which served him well when he traveled to pharmacy schools across the eastern United States, meeting and recruiting pharmacists at local universities.

After 10 years in Pennsylvania, they retired in Williamsburg to be closer to family. Howard and Helen were welcomed into the St. Bede Catholic Church community where they were involved in liturgical ministries and the Young at Heart group. Howard was a member of the local Mustang Club and often showed his cherished 1965 Ford Mustang at local car shows. You could often see Howard and Helen riding around Williamsburg with the top down.

Howard and Helen were married for more than 57 years and enjoyed life with their three children and their spouses, Karen and Bill Hale, of Elizabeth City, North Carolina; John H. II and Catherine Garrett, of Chesterfield; and Jeffrey and Ann Garrett, of Wake Forest, North Carolina. He was a beloved and generous grandfather who often broke the rules for his adoring grandkids, Jessica Warren, Erin Barefoot, John H. Garrett III (Jack), Sydie Garrett and Mary Helen Garrett.

Howard and Helen enjoyed boating, playing bridge, traveling and spending time at the Outer Banks with family and friends.

A viewing will be held from 2 to 6 p.m. Monday, July 20, 2015, at St. Bede Catholic Church, 3686 Ironbound Road, Williamsburg. A memorial mass will take place at 2 p.m. Tuesday, July 21, 2015, at the church followed by a reception. A rite of committal will take place at 11 a.m. Wednesday, July 22, 2015, at Holy Family Catholic Church, 1453 N. Road St., Elizabeth City, NC.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations to be made to Holy Family Catholic Church or St. Bede Catholic Church.

Please leave online condolences for the family at Nelsen Funeral Home.

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