John S. Jenkins ’46

John Stevens Jenkins, 90, of Wayne, Illinois died Tuesday, December 20, 2016.

Mr. Jenkins was born June 18, 1926, in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania to Thomas Evans Jenkins and Kathleen Dreher Jenkins.

John was happiest telling stories and shooting skeet. He kept up both these hobbies well past his 90th birthday. He spent his last day with his dog, friends, and family taking stock of his blessings, laughing, and planning his next adventure. He fell asleep chuckling and died peacefully in his sleep with family close by.

John’s pastimes also included trout fishing, tennis, raising chickens, bridge, dancing, and any friendly competitive game of the season, including bocce ball and Pétanque. He loved his dogs, but he especially favored his English setter, Jay, who has been beside him for the past ten years.

John grew up and attended school outside of Boston, served in the Navy and the Merchant Marine, and shot skeet competitively before he moved to Detroit in 1955 to begin his career in industrial machine tool sales. There met the love of his life, Mary Lou. Following business opportunity in Illinois, they moved to Chicago where he started Jenkins Machine and Tool, the business he led for more than 50 years. In 1960, he and Mary Lou found a home in Wayne where they had friends and family nearby. But probably what clinched the decision to raise their children in this small village of 250 was a shooting club in the woods on the old Dunham Road called White Gates Skeet Club.

John was passionate about shooting and about White Gates. He rarely missed a Sunday of shooting in over 60 years. He taught many of his friends (as well as their children) to shoot, often mentoring a young shooter each season, thereby starting a new generation of skeet shooters and guaranteeing the sport would have a home in Wayne.

He is survived by his daughters, Lynwood, of Glen Ellyn, Illinois and Carrie, of Boulder, Colorado, as well as three grandsons and two granddaughters. He is also survived by his devoted companion dog, Jay.

He was preceded in death by his wife, Mary Lou and his sister, Mayan.