John, a noted groundwater scientist who was also a great skier and owned a California vineyard, died Jan. 1, 2023, at his home in Sausalito overlooking San Francisco Bay.
John was born Feb. 28, 1933, in St. Louis, Mo. He attended Kirkwood (Mo.) High School, where he participated in track and publications. At Princeton, he joined Elm Club and majored in geological engineering. He was a member of the Engineering Council and AIME, survey editor of The Daily Princetonian, and basketball manager. His senior-year roommates were Chet Safian and Jim Gleason. After Princeton, John received his MS and Ph.D. in geology from the University of Illinois.
He was an accomplished geoscientist at the forefront of important developments in hydrogeology during a distinguished career with the U.S. Geological Survey. He also taught and mentored students as a visiting professor at the University of Illinois, Stanford, UC Santa Cruz, and San Francisco State.
He received the California Groundwater Resources Association Lifetime Achievement Award in 2004 and the Legendary Geoscientist Medal from the American Geosciences Institute in 2013 “for his lifetime of contributions.”
John loved exploring the world and was an avid sportsman, skier, fly fisher, and golfer. He and his wife, Beth Garbutt, traveled to Russia, Georgia, Italy, and France as well as throughout the United States. He also owned a cabin in Wyoming and a vineyard in Sonoma County, from which he made chardonnay, labeled Bejon.
John is survived by Beth; children John, Martha, Paul, and Chris; and his first wife, Laura Larson Bredehoeft.