Obituary through Cody White Funeral Home
The Honorable John J. Ronan, 90, of Milford, Connecticut, passed away peacefully at his home on November 17, 2022.
Born November 3, 1932 in Bridgeport, he was the son of the late John and Elizabeth (Ryan) Ronan. He graduated from Fairfield College Preparatory School in 1950 and received his BSS from Fairfield University in 1954. After graduation, he entered active duty in the United States Marine Corps and served until June 1960. He was discharged with honor with the rank of Captain. Lui attended the University of Connecticut Law School as an evening student while working full-time in a variety of positions at the Southern New England Telephone Company in New Haven. He received his Juris Doctor in June 1963 and was admitted to the Connecticut bar in August 1963. For the next 20 years, John served in private practice with attorney Richard H. Lynch in Milford, CT. John often referred to Dick Lynch as a mentor and credited Dick with instilling in him the virtues of fairness, hard work, and dedication to the legal profession. John also served as a part-time prosecutor in the state court system from 1967 to 1984.
John was sworn in as a Superior Court judge by Governor William A. O’Neill on May 1, 1984. During his career on the bench, he served as a judge in the judicial districts of Middlesex, Hartford, Stamford, Fairfield and New Haven. In addition to his court duties, he served as Chief Administrative Judge of the Criminal Division of the Superior Court from 1987 to 1999. At that time, he was appointed Deputy Chief Court Administrator by then Chief Justice, Robert Callahan and Chief Court Administrator, Robert C. Leuba. He has also been designated to lead or serve on many committees and task forces focused on reforming the criminal justice system in Connecticut. He has often reflected on the privilege of being respected as a fair, just, and caring lawyer by members of the judiciary and attorneys on both sides of a case, and he truly relished the opportunity to share his professional experiences and mentor others in the community. legal.
Judge Ronan, who was widely known as “JR” and “Pop” by family members, was a devoted son, husband, father, grandfather and friend to many. To those who knew John, he was a devout Catholic and proud Marine who fully embraced his duties to the community outside of his work. Milford Courthouse was a second home, where in addition to serving as a referee for nearly two decades, he maintained close relationships with his extended family. His career has been second only to the love he has shared for his wife Arlene, family and friends. He enjoyed giggling at the Peanuts cartoon of the day, sharing a good joke with court staff and fellow attorneys, and cheering on (or criticizing) NY Giants and University of Notre Dame football. He was one of a kind about him and was known for his honesty, integrity, compassion and fairness to those around him.
He is preceded in death by his beloved wife, Arlene McDonagh Ronan and is survived by their four children, Kevin (Lori) Ronan of Raymond, ME; Ryan (Jeena) Ronan of Scottsdale, Arizona; MaryEllen (Geoff) Knotwell of Milford, CT; and Elizabeth (Chris) Duryea of New Haven, CT; as well as her three beloved grandchildren, Nicholas Ronan, Geoffrey Knotwell and Trevor Knotwell. He will be deeply missed.
A Christian burial mass will be held on Tuesday, November 29, 2022 at 10:30 am at St Mary’s Church, 70 Gulf Street, Milford, CT 06460. (PLEASE MEET AT CHURCH) Interment will take place at St Mary’s Cemetery , Buckingham Avenue, Milford, Connecticut. In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made in memory of Judge Ronan to the Connecticut Bar Foundation or the Semper Fi & America’s Fund.