John Erwin Paddock, 75, passed away peacefully at his home in the early hours of Saturday, Oct. 10, 2020.
Born May 5, 1945 in Springfield, PA, John was the youngest child of the late Daniel A. and Alice VB Rice Paddock. He grew up on the family farm near Gettysburg and graduated from Gettysburg High School in 1963. As a teenager, John began to work for a family friend, Carol Voss, owner of Ag Rotors, selling tickets for helicopter rides around the Gettysburg Battlefield. John volunteered for the U.S. Army to be trained as a helicopter mechanic. After training, he was stationed in Germany and volunteered for Vietnam. After Vietnam, he was stationed in TX. He left the Army as a Specialist 5, returning to the Gettysburg area and going back to work for Ag Rotors. He obtained his fixed wing pilot’s license in FL and his helicopter pilot’s license in PA. He later joined the National Guard, moved to Lebanon, PA, and worked at Ft. Indiantown Gap as a mechanic where he serviced Chinooks, Skycranes, and other helicopters. He retired as a Staff Sergeant in 1998. John’s hobbies included camping, woodworking, and fishing. He had a deep love and appreciation of nature. John enjoyed visiting his family’s lakefront cottage, Rice Heritage Cottage on the Cayuga Lake as well as spending time at the Paddock family farm outside of Gettysburg, PA. He also had a fondness for collecting birdhouses and outhouses. John passed along this love of nature to his children.
John is survived by his wife of 47 years, Susan Elaine Paddock (nee Oaster), of Lebanon, PA, sons, Christopher (wife Betty), of Fairfield, PA, Sean (wife Sylvia), of Lebanon, PA, Neil, of Pine Grove, PA, three grandchildren (Morgan Wolfe, Emma and Joshua Paddock) and one great-grandchild, Jakob Gillan. John is also survived by his siblings, Eleanor Brossoie, of Tinton Falls, NJ and Jim Paddock, of Gettysburg, PA, and numerous nieces and nephews.
The family will be holding a private service to celebrate John’s life. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in John’s name to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research (https://www.michaeljfox.org/).