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John L. Berney Memorial

By Mike Murphy

Greetings friends,

I have the sad duty to inform you that John L. Berney passed away on January 24, 2004.

John's career as an educator of 28 years included teaching biology at Pioneer and Leland High Schools, and as administrator at Hacienda Science Magnet and Gunderson High Schools. Upon his retirement from the San Jose Unified School District in 1989 John enjoyed membership in many service and social organizations. John had many hobbies including piloting light planes, woodworking, and traveling extensively with Dorothy, his wife of 45 years.

For those of us in Scouting John will be especially remembered for the numerous summers he spent at Camp Hi-Sierra in various capacities spanning three decades. He began with a stint as Nature Director in 1959 where he helped carve and erect the Totem Pole that stood in the Flag Assembly meadow for over 40 years. John also experienced the ending of an era when "pack mules" were still used at Camp for many overnight hikes. John later served as Program Director in the 1960's and Camp Director for many years in the 1970's. Both of John's sons grew up with Camp Hi-Sierra as their special summer retreat.

Some of John's best-remembered "trademarks" at Camp include his "flintlock pistol"- which was fired at evening Flag Ceremonies and a full-sized "Bullwhip". He would casually display his skill snapping the whip after meals in the Program meadow where many unwary Staff or Scouts would ask to try it out. I well remember how my ankles stung after many attempts to get the durn thing to work right!

John's wife Dorothy and his sons Andy and John invite their friends to attend a Memorial Mass held at Saint Julie Billiart Parish, 6410 Cottle Road, San Jose at 11:00 AM on Saturday, February 14, 2004. Directions: Exit from Highway 85 onto Cottle Road going South. Pass Santa Teresa Hospital, pass through Santa Teresa Blvd (the 2nd traffic light), then cross Curie Drive (the first Stop sign). Saint Julie's Church is on the South-East corner of Cottle and Curie.

Memorial contributions in lieu of flowers may be made in John's name to Kaiser Santa Teresa Hospice at 275 Hospital Parkway #825, San Jose, Ca. 95119

Friends of John L. Berney are also invited to gather together after the service at the Lions Club in San Martin on Murphy Ave. between 1:00 and 4:00 PM. In order to properly "Be Prepared" for the numbers attending the family would appreciate a response to the Email address or phone number listed below at the earliest possible time. Please indicate how many people you anticipate attending. Directions: South on Highway 101, exit San Martin going West (right), turn left at Murphy, watch for Lion's Club near airport.

Again; Please RSVP to the Email address listed below. Many thanks!

Mike Murphy
408 629-3448

Note: There will be a Recognition of John's Service in Scouting at the Camp Hi-Sierra Reunion to be held in San Jose on April 3, 2004. If you've ever attended Camp check the Council website, pick up a registration form, or contact Mike for more information.

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