Parks and Recreation Image


Juneau-Douglas City Museum


Furuness, John O.

by John Furuness
UID=1053


John Furuness was born on August 23, 1928, in his family’s apartment home in Juneau, Alaska, where the Evergreen Apartments are currently located. Assisting at his birth was Mrs. Pete Hildre, Jeanette Gould’s mother. A short while after his birth, he and his parents, four sisters and three brothers moved to Thane, four miles south of Juneau. (See Linda (Furuness) Ecklund story.) John lived in Thane and went to the Juneau grade school until the spring of 1942, when he moved to Seattle with his parents and sister Delphine. John finished the eighth grade at John Marshall Junior High School and graduated from Lincoln High School in Seattle, Washington in 1946.

He enlisted for three years in the U.S. Coast Guard in September, 1946. After receiving an Honorable Discharge he immediately enrolled at Washington State College under the G.I. Bill of Rights. After three and a half years, he returned to Juneau and was employed with the Bureau of Commercial Fisheries until 1963. He returned to college in September, 1963, and received a B.A. degree in Business Administration in 1965.

John married his wife Donna upon graduation from college and was employed by General Electric in Richland, Washington, and the Boeing Company in Seattle, before returning to Juneau in 1968. John and Donna have four children (two sons and two daughters) who graduated from Juneau High School, three of whom are now living in Juneau. Their oldest son lives in Snohomish, Washington.

John retired from the National Marine Fisheries Service in 1991, and he and Donna are living in Juneau. He has one brother living in Idaho, one sister living in Juneau and one sister living in Indiana.