Jon J. Fortier ’86
Jon Fortier, 59, passed away on Sept. 30, 2023, after a three-year battle with cancer. His final weeks were under the excellent care of the team at Maine General Hospital Augusta and hospice. He spent his last days in the home of some dear friends where he was visited daily by friends and loved ones.
Jon grew up in Maine and graduated from Winslow High School in 1982. He went on to graduate from Maine Maritime Academy with a BS in engineering in 1986.
Jon embarked on his prolific engineering career after graduation. He was the engineer on the Lightship Nantucket for her journey from Rockland to N.Y. Harbor for the Fourth of July unveiling of the refurbished Statue of Liberty in 1986. After several years with General Dynamics Electric Boat Division as a Submarine Construction Foreman, Jon began his long career with Westinghouse/Northrup Grumman as a field engineer supervising the construction and installation of turbines and turbo generators in many US Navy vessels.
Jon retired from Northrup Grumman as a full-time engineer in 2010 and began a career as an independent contract engineer where his expertise was in constant demand. One memorable assignment for the Navy had him flying to the Middle East and landing on an aircraft carrier to oversee a turbine repair. Once done he was catapulted off the carrier (one of the wildest rides of his life) to begin his journey home.
In 2011, the City of Boston hired him to oversee the construction of its new fire boat which was being constructed in Kingston Ontario Canada. When the project was completed, Jon’s fee was officially noted to be the best money they spent because of his attention to detail. Jon sailed on the delivery voyage through the locks into the Hudson River then down around NYC and back up to Boston.
Jon’s passions included a lifelong love of music and photography. The outdoors always spoke to Jon. He was an avid hunter and fisherman and especially loved snowmobiling where he circumnavigated both Moosehead Lake and the Gaspe Peninsula in Quebec several times.
At Maine Maritime Academy Jon became part of a large “band of brothers” that became lifetime friends. Many of those midshipmen were the very ones, amongst his many other great friends, who kept him laughing and reminiscing in the last weeks of his wonderful life.
Jon made a generous donation to the MMA Class of 1986 endowed scholarship fund prior to his passing and will forever be associated with that great institution.
A celebration of life will be announced at a later date.