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John H. Callanan

July 28, 1936 ~ October 14, 2023 (age 87) 87 Years Old

John Callanan Obituary

John Hoyt Callanan, age 87, left for heaven on Saturday, October 14, 2023 after managing congestive heart failure on his own terms. John was born in Albany, New York on July 28, 1936 to Keith Mynderse and Elizabeth Dowling Callanan. John grew up in South Bethlehem, New York on his family’s farm and went to a country school. He was educated at the Albany Academy and at the Hebron Academy in Maine. John went on to and graduated from the Colorado School of Mines with an engineering degree. While in Colorado, he met his future bride, Patrica Ann Major. John and Pat were married on June 30, 1962. 

John started his career as a mining engineer operating a stone quarry and a cement company before going to work for Callanan Industries doing urban renewal work, building bridges and managing road construction projects. But John’s passion was flying seaplanes. He got his private pilot’s license in the late 1960’s and didn’t stop flying until he was 82 years old. John had the privilege of owning airplanes including a Cessna 185, a Piper Cherokee, and a Grumman Widgeon. He enjoyed flying his family to Martha’s Vineyard and Cape Cod for afternoons on the beach and vacationing with his wife on Crooked Island in the Bahamas. John and Pat had many flying adventures the last of which were based out of the Holland Airpark in Holmen WI. 

John became a follower of Jesus early in his life, and he and Pat raised their children in a Christian home. John and Pat took several trips to Israel. On one of their trips, they were both baptized in the Jordan River. John loved the Lord with all his heart and would talk to everyone about the necessity of knowing Jesus as their Savior.  He was looking forward to the Lord coming to get him to start his eternal life in heaven and to be reunited with his wife, Pat. And, now he is!

John is survived by his four children Laurel (and Daniel) Fairchild of Castleton, NY, MaryPat (and Carl) Peterson of Westby, WI, Jane Callanan (and Vincent Cervoni) of Wallingford, Ct, and Peter (and Tracy) Callanan of Klein, TX. He is also survived by his younger sister Lynn Gardner of Rensselaer, NY, his longtime friend and protégé Billy Biers, his nieces and nephews, and his wonderful friends. John was proud of all 7 of his grandchildren: Whitney, Leah, Eric, Grace, Courtney, Luke and Claire.

He was preceded in death by both of his parents, his wife Patrica Major Callanan, and his older sister Gail Lincoln.

Thank you to the entire team at Gundersen Hospice but especially to his favorite nurse and friend, Jenna, who coached him, encouraged him and put up with him to the end. He loved you very much.

John’s family invites you to a visitation from 9 to11 a.m. concluding with service at 11:00 a.m. on Tuesday, October 17, 2023 at the Seland Funeral Home in Coon Valley. Condolences may be given at

To send flowers to the family or plant a tree in memory of John H. Callanan, please visit our floral store.

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October 17, 2023

9:00 AM to 11:00 AM
Seland Funeral Home & Cremation Services
204 Central Ave
Coon Valley, WI 54623

Memorial Service
October 17, 2023

11:00 AM
Seland Funeral Home & Cremation Services
204 Central Ave
Coon Valley, WI 54623


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