John "Jack" Francis Sweeney, M.D. (85) passed away after a short illness on Tuesday, December 29, 2020 at Niagara Hospice House in Lockport, NY.
He will be most remembered for his service to the community as a physician, his love for his family, his quick wit and intellect, his ability to tell a story and make people laugh, and his love of the outdoors.
He was a husband, father, grandfather, physician, gardener, outdoorsman, storyteller, dance partner extraordinaire, and consummate impromptu comedian.
Additional community volunteerism included coaching Niagara Pioneer House Soccer League, serving as Treasurer of the Lew-Port Sports Boosters, and sitting on the Board of Advisors of Niagara University.
He was born in the Bronx, on May 13, 1935, the son of Frank and Mary (McGinty) Sweeney and resided at many NYC addresses in his early years before settling in Jamaica, Queens.
He attended Xavier High School in Manhattan, riding the subway each day and using this time to translate Latin assignments. Upon graduation, he attended St. Peter’s College in Jersey City, NJ, again doing his homework on his subway commutes. He attended NYU Medical School to pursue his lifelong dream of becoming a doctor.
In 1961, 6 days after medical school graduation, he married Monica (Cerina) and started his family life. Over the following 5 years, he completed his residency at St. Vincent’s in NYC while welcoming 3 children into the family (Kathleen, Michael & John). Upon finishing his medical training, he was inducted into the U.S. Army and stationed at Fort Wainwright in Fairbanks, Alaska. The entire family moved to Alaska where they lived for the next 2 years while welcoming a fourth child (Robert). In Alaska, Jack developed a love for the outdoors which stayed with him the rest of his life, spending time hunting, fishing, and trapping. Upon discharge from the Army in 1968, the family returned to NYC where they would decide on their next adventure. Later that year, Jack joined an OB/GYN practice (Drs. Connolly and Gordon) and the family moved to Lewiston, NY and later to their property on the lake in Youngstown, NY. Here they welcomed their fifth child (Richard) into the family.
Along with his partners (Drs. Perez and Greene), Jack practiced OB/GYN for 27 years. Jack was very proud of having delivered an estimated 2,500+ babies during his career. Jack retired from medicine in 1995 and turned his focus to manicuring his property on the lake into an impressive showcase of Japanese gardens. He loved to tour visitors and friends through the property, proudly showing his creations.
He is survived by his wife of 59 years, Monica; children Kathleen, Michael, John (Kristen), Robert (Laura), Richard (Katherine); and grandchildren John (Vashti), Kathleen, John, Margaret, Robert, Liam, Erin, Alastair, Owen, Ellabei, and Campbell.
A memorial service will be held at a later date when people can gather safely.
Donations in Jack’s memory may be made to the John Sweeney MD Scholarship Fund at Xavier High School (www.xavierhs.org/johnsweeney) or check made out to ”Xavier HS/John Sweeney MD Scholarship” and mailed to: 30 W. 16th Street, New York, NY 10011.
Arrangements were made through the RHONEY FUNERAL HOME, Lewiston, NY.
Please visit www.rhoneyfuneralhome.com, for guest register.
To send flowers to John "Jack" Francis Sweeney, M.D.'s family, please visit our floral store.