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Photo of John that accompanied his obituary in the Lewistown Sentinel.
Contributed by rkohler3 on 8/23/16 - Image Year: 2010


John E. Groninger, 90, of Mexico, was surrounded by his loving family and peacefully passed away on Aug. 22, 2016, following a courageous battle with cancer.

Born on March 8, 1926, in Walker Township, Juniata County, he was the son of the late Edgar David and Ella (Kauffman) Groninger.

On July 21, 1950, he married the former Caryl Lee McWilliams and was blessed to share 66 years of marriage with her.

In addition to his wife, he is survived by his three children; a son, John E. Groninger Jr., of Mifflin, and his wife, Cynthia, and his daughters, Kim E. (Groninger) Bomberger, of Port Royal, and her husband, David, and LuAnn (Groninger) Visser, of Newport, and her husband, Shaun; seven grandchildren, Alexa and Chad Groninger, of Mifflin, Zachary Bomberger and wife, Nicole, of Port Royal, Meagan (Bomberger) Besancon and husband, Andrew, of Lititz, Philip Bomberger and wife, Brittney, of Mifflintown, Graham and Eric Visser of Newport; two great-grandchildren, Huntley Bomberger and Trapper Besancon, and two siblings, a brother, William H. Groninger, of Camp Hill, and a sister, Anna Mary (Groninger) Port, of Charleston, South Carolina.

One son, Barry, and four brothers, Gerald, Frank, Robert and Carl preceded him in death.

John attended Juniata Joint High School, and at age 17, he joined the Coast Guard and had his training at the Maritime School in Brooklyn, New York. After graduation, he proudly served as a Merchant Marine from 1943 through 1948 and he achieved the rank of Boatswain. He was in the invasion of France on D-Day, June 6, 1944, and served in the Atlantic and the Pacific during the war. In 1950, John was called once again to serve his country, this time in Korea. He served in the 72nd Tank Battalion, Second Division, and was discharged in 1952 as a Sergeant Major.

Prior to John being drafted to Korea, he started his own construction company in Juniata County. While John was serving in Korea, his uncle Oscar Groninger promised to keep his business going until his return. When John returned home and with the confidence and experience he acquired, John began to expand his construction company, John E. Groninger, Inc. After some time, John acquired Juniata Concrete Co. and started the Republic Development Corp. and Republic Land Co., which are devoted to real estate and land development. He is also affiliated with Juniata Lumber and Supply Co.

John was an active and devoted life-long member of the Mexico Presbyterian Church and served as Elder. He served as a director of the Juniata Valley Council of the Boy Scouts of America and also served on the committee for the Good Scout Dinner. Additionally, he served as a director of the American Builder's and Contractor's Association, Consumers Life Insurance Co., and served on the Board of Directors of the Juniata Valley Bank for more than 40 years.

John was an active member of various organizations in Mifflintown. He was a 50-year member and past president of the Mifflintown Lions Club, a 50-year member of the Union Lodge No. 324 F&AM, the Crawford-Brubaker VFW Post 5863, the American Legion Post 298 and the Tall Cedars of Lebanon, Juniata Valley Forest No. 88.

In 1986, John was the recipient of the Juniata Valley Council Good Scout Award. In 1990, he received the Silver Beaver Award for distinguished service to youth and he was the 2013 Shawnee Gold Medal Recipient. John was honored with the prestigious 2016 Melvin Jones Fellow award, which is given for dedicated humanitarian service by the Lions Clubs International Foundation.

John was a sports enthusiast and a great fan of all sports but loved following high school and college wrestling and football and has been a Penn State football season ticket holder since 1956. John enjoyed tennis and played until he was 86 years old.

John and his wife Caryl, were a very adventurous couple and enjoyed traveling the world and spending time with family and friends at their "cottage" along the creek. He loved being with his grandchildren and was very active and influential in their lives.

Those who knew John know that he was a man of deep faith and loved God, his family and his Country. John will be greatly missed by many but especially by his wife, children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

A viewing will be held from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Thursday, Aug. 25, 2016, at the Cedar Grove Church, after which the casket will be closed. There will be no viewing on the day of the funeral service.

A funeral service will be held at 11 a.m. Friday, Aug. 26, 2016, at the Cedar Grove Brethren in Christ Church, 287 Deerville Road, Mifflintown, PA 17059, with Pastor Crystal Lyde officiating. Interment will follow in the Adams Cemetery, Mifflintown, where the Juniata County Veterans Council will accord full military burial honors.

Arrangements have been entrusted to the Brown Funeral Homes Inc., 100 Bridge St., Mifflintown.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be sent to the Mexico Presbyterian Church, P.O. Box 36, Mexico, PA 17056.

Online condolences and tributes may be sent to the family at,

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