John Howard Penn, 69, passed away at Madison Center on May 11, 2021, after a short battle with cancer. John was born in Washington, Pa., to the late H. Ray Penn and Mary Rose Barnard Penn.
John received his Bachelor of Science degree from West Virginia Wesleyan in 1974, received his Ph.D. from the University of Madison-Wisconsin in 1981 and did his Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Utah from 1981-1983. Following his education, he worked as an organic chemistry Professor at West Virginia University from 1983-2017; where he received the WVU Outstanding Teacher Award in 1997. John also was an active member of the Morgantown Elks for 12 years and served as the State President for one year. He enjoyed volunteering at Mon Health Medical Center; where he received the 2011 & 2019 WV Healthcare Volunteer of the year award. He also volunteered at Madison Center, along with driving a bus for Suncrest United Methodist Church.
John is survived by his stepchildren, Rhonda (Roy) Johnson, Monica (J.D.) Foell and Kenneth (Tammy) Botham; his siblings, Eileen and Robert Penn; his best friend, Vera Bennett; and several nieces, nephews, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, colleagues, friends and his loyal canine companion, Heinrich.
In addition to his parents, John was preceded in death by his wife, Gloria Gozdzik.
McCulla Funeral Home has provided cremation services. Visitation will be held at McCulla Funeral Home, from 1-3 p.m., Thursday, May 20. A memorial service will be held at 3 p.m. with Pastor Michael Estep officiating. The Morgantown Elks will provide a service at the conclusion of the memorial service.