In memory of
John Milton Foster
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In memory of
John Milton Foster
John Milton Foster, Ph.D., 67, of Panama City, Florida, passed away on Oct. 12, 2016, at Gulf Coast Regional Medical Center after a prolonged battle with cancer. Funeral services will be held at 10 a.m. on Friday, Oct. 21, at Kent-Forest Lawn Funeral Home, officiated by Rev. (Dr.) James Luther, with interment to follow at Evergreen Memorial Gardens. The family will receive friends from 6-8 p.m. on Thursday, Oct. 20, at Kent-Forest Lawn Funeral Home. John Milton Foster was born on Sept. 20, 1949, in Panama City, Florida, to Milton and Hazel (Parker) Foster. John was a 1967 graduate of Rutherford High School. He continued his formal education at Gulf Coast Community College, and the University of West Florida, graduating in 1971. In the same year, John began teaching geography and history in the Bay District Schools at Mowat Middle School. He remained at Mowat Middle School until August of 1989, when he became a founding faculty member at Surfside Middle School, later teaching the sciences, until his retirement at the end of the 2005 school year. During his tenure with the Bay District Schools, John also taught as an adjunct instructor of social sciences at Gulf Coast Community College from 1976 to 2000. In December of 2008, John graduated from The University of Southern Mississippi with a Doctorate of Philosophy in Coastal Sciences. In 2011, John came out of retirement to become a professor of biology at Gulf Coast State College, where he remained until July of 2015. John was a veteran of the armed forces, serving in the United States Air Force Reserve as a member of the 919th Special Operations Group at Duke Field, Eglin Air Force Base, from 1971 to 1977. John was a man of many talents and passions. John spent many days on the waters of Saint Andrew Bay and Saint Joseph Bay collecting specimens and conducting research. During his research, John was known to have described at least five new species of marine invertebrate animals, participated in the description of several others, and published numerous scientific papers about the marine environment. John was also known as a musician, having played both the guitar and bass guitar in several bluegrass bands locally. An avid reader, John could often be found in coffee shops around town, usually reading and sipping on his iced coffee. John was proceeded in death by his father, Milton Foster. He is survived by his mother, Hazel Foster; wife of 34 years, Jayne (Sims) Foster; son John "Alex" Foster (Keely); daughter Anna Smolinski-Foster, brothers Richard Foster (Linda) and Steven Foster (Donna); and numerous nieces, nephews, cousins, colleagues, and thousands of former students whose lives he touched. Expressions of sympathy may be submitted or viewed online at Kent-Forest Lawn Funeral Home 2403 Harrison Ave. Panama City, FL 32405 850-763-4694
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Kent-Forest Lawn
2403 Harrison Avenue, Panama City, FL 32405
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