John Nowlin McClain, 95, of Signal Mountain, died peacefully on May 7, 2012 at home.
Born in Lakeland, Fla., he was the son of William and Ruth McClain. He graduated from high school in Davidson, NC in 1934. He graduated from The Georgia Institute of Technology in 1939 with a Mechanical Engineering degree. He served as a second lieutenant in the Army during WWII as an Ordnance Officer.
He worked at Combustion Engineering for 57 years, retiring as Director of Manufacturing Services. Upon retirement, he had the distinction of being the longest active employee at the Chattanooga division.
He was a member of the American Institute of Industrial Engineers, where he served as President and was recognized as the “Outstanding Industrial Engineer” in the southeastern United States. He was active in the Chattanooga Engineers Club, Society for the Advancement of Management, and Chattanooga Chamber of Commerce. He served as a visiting professor at the University of Chattanooga, teaching classes in management.
He is an elder emeritus at Signal Mountain Presbyterian Church, where he served as head of the Building Committee for the new sanctuary in the early 1980s. He was also active in the Chattanooga Kiwanis Club and the Signal Mountain Golf and Country Club.
In 1941 he married Alma Forster of Rome, Ga. They were married for 55 years until her death in 1997. In 2000 he married Mary Stewart Becking Smith, who preceded him in death in 2011.
Surviving him are his three children, Marjorie Vincent (Joe) and Jane Blankinship of Cordova, Tn., and John McClain, Jr. (Frances) of Raleigh, N.C.; two stepchildren, Karen Glendenning (Louis), and Alfred Smith, Jr. (Alice.); eight grandchildren, Patrick Blankinship, Heather Louallen, John McClain, III, Andrew McClain, Christopher Vincent, Nicholas Vincent, Colin Vincent, Lorin Vincent and three great-grandchildren Chloe Louallen, Isaac Sims and Ethan Vincent .
The family is appreciative of the love and support shown by his caregiver, Frances Williams, whose attention and care enabled their father to live an independent and meaningful life until his death.
A private burial will be followed by a service celebrating his life at Signal Mountain Presbyterian Church on Thursday, May 10, at 1:30 p.m. The family will receive guests at the church following the service.
In lieu of flowers, gifts may be made to the McClain Scholarship Fund at Signal Mountain Presbyterian Church.
Arrangements are by Chattanooga Funeral Home Crematory and Florist, North Chapel, 5401 Highway 153, Hixson, Tn. 37434.
Share your memories on line at www.chattanooganorthchapel.com.