In memory of
Dr. John A. Outterson
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In memory of
Dr. John A. Outterson
The Celebration of Life of Dr. John A. Outterson, who died May 25, 2014 will be held at 4:00PM Saturday, May 31, 2014 at the Lankford Funeral Home in DeLand. Dr. Outterson was born in Binghamton, New York and moved to Fort Pierce, Florida in 1944. He enlisted in the United States Marine Corps and served with the 1st Marine Division on Okinawa and later in North China with Marine Transport Squadron 153 earning the rate of Sergeant. Upon his discharge he enlisted in the Marine Corps Reserve. He married his wife, Viva Jean, of 63 years on September 2, 1950. On October 5, 1950 he was recalled to active service and served in Marine Fighter Squadron 114 during the Korean Conflict until he was released from active duty in November 1951. With the G.I. bill supplied by a grateful nation he attended the University of Florida where he was awarded his Bachelor and Master degrees in 1955 and 1956 respectively. Dr. Outterson taught physics in the Houston Public Schools and later became a TV teacher of physics at the University of Houston. In 1961 he completed his course work for his doctorate and took a professional position at Oklahoma State University. In 1963 he was awarded the Doctor of Education degree. His professional life took him to positions at the University of Tampa, University of Florida, Frostburg State University and Stetson University. Dr. Outterson served as educational consultant to the United States Department of Education, United States Department of Labor, Florida Department of Education, the National Safety Council, and to many colleges and universities and school districts. He was a member of many national and state educational organizations, accreditation agencies, and served on many educational committees. His professional recognition includes Who's Who in the South and Southwest, Personalities of the South, Men of Outstanding Achievement, Who's Who in Educational Administration, Who's Who in Education and International Biographical Dictionary. Dr. Outterson is a member of the honorary education fraternity, Kappa Delta Pi and the education leadership fraternity, Phi Delta Kappa. Dr. Outterson returned to high school teaching at New Smyrna High School where he taught physics for several years prior to retiring in 1988. Upon retiring Dr. Outterson and is wife turned their attentions to serving their community as civic activists. He served on several County Council, School board and City of DeLand committees including the County Citizens Committee on Fiscal Responsibility, the County Charter Review Committee, County Manager Search Committee, School Impact Study Committee, County Healthcare Task Force, School ½ Cent Sales Tax Study Committee, DeLand City Manager Search Committee and the DeLand Police Facilities Committee. Dr. Outterson also provided the leadership to change the School Board reapportionment of the county to better reflect the population, the election of School Board members to single member districts, the creation of the Advance Technology Center, the new Volusia County Court House, the movement for the ½ cent sales tax for schools, and the establishment of the Pierson Medical Center. Dr. Outterson served on the Citizens Advisory Committee and advisor to the members of the West Volusia Hospital Authority for over fifteen years. He was also instrumental in bringing Florida Hospital to West Volusia and had the privilege of renaming the DeLand hospital. Dr. Outterson also was deeply involved in the political campaigns of many people in city, county, judicial district and congressional district elections. Over the years he sponsored many political forums and brought community leaders to the residents of the retirement homes in the area. For several years he has served on the selection committee for nominees to the military academies. Dr. Outterson was a prolific writer and many of his books can be found in the local libraries. He was a very active member of the DeLand Chamber of Commerce, past President of the DeLand Overseas Veterans, and served with the local Marine Corps association. For his community contributions John's recognition includes the Point of Light Award Recipient by Governor Bush, Proclamation of Appreciation by the City of DeLand, Recognized for Contribution by the Volusia County School District, and Special Congressional Recognition by Congressman John L. Mica. In addition to his wife, Viva Jean he is survived by a daughter, Valerie Jean Harkin, and grandchildren Kyle, Elizabeth, Catherine, Kevin and William Harkin. Arrangements for the Celebration of Life of Dr. Outterson are under the direction of Lankford Funeral Home. Please visit to leave a note of support for the family.
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