It is with great joy and sadness we would like to inform you that our namesake and leader passed away on Saturday, January 31st, 2015 after a long battle with Alzheimer’s. Our foundation, which turned three years old in December was established to bring awareness and research to Cognitive Impairment (Alzheimer’s,Dementia) and TBI (traumatic brain injury). Both my mom “Florence” and my dad john suffered from these illnesses. By the year 2040, cognitive impairment will be the #1 cause of death and cost to the American public ahead of heart disease and cancer. My Dad’s passing gives us even more strength and determination to make sure the American Public and the World recognize the severity of this cause. Our joy is Johnny O can rest in peace and meet up his wife. Our sadness is we have truly lost another great person.
John “Johnny O” ORavitz was born in Wilkes-Barre on June 9, 1928; he was the son of Robert and Elizabeth ORavitz. John’s wife of 63 years “Florence” passed in 2012. John attended GAR High School and earned an engineering degree from Lehigh University in 1953. John was also a World War II Navy Veteran. Surviving are his two son’s Mark ORavitz, Scottsdale AZ, Jeff “John” St. James, Flowery Branch, GA, grandsons, John–Carter ORavitz, Newport Beach , CA and Dare ORavitz, an Officer and Ranger in the U.S. Army stationed at Ft. Bliss, TX. Funeral details will be released at a later date.
The family requests in lieu of flowers, donations can be made to:
The Johnny O Alzheimer’s, Dementia and TBI Awareness Foundation
PO Box 15211 Scottsdale, AZ 85267
Mark “MarkO” ORavitz
Son and CEO of the foundation
Johnny O is John R. ORavitz. John was born in Wilkes-Barre, PA on 6/9/1928. His roots were German and his up bringing was in a very hard working ethnic family. He attended GAR High School in Wilkes-Barre. He ran track and was the captain of the debate team.
He excelled in his studies and was offered a scholarship to MIT, but chose a stint in the Navy at the end of World War II and then enrolled at Lehigh University in Bethlehem PA. John studied metallurgical engineering and graduated at the top of his class in 1953. During his time at Lehigh, he married Florence Answini and they had two children (Mark and Jeff). John's career was mainly in the metals industry with upper management positions with companies like Scovill (owners of such brands as Hamilton Beach). His time was mainly spent in the Northeast and Southeastern parts of the country. He also ran the US operations later in his career for a company that was headquartered in Germany. He retired in 1995 and he and his wife moved to Scottsdale AZ. They moved in 2005 to Atlanta. In 2006, Florence was diagnosed with meningitis, which became encephalitis of the brain. Florence had lost all her short term memory and John had now become her caretaker. In 2010, John was diagnosed with Alzheimer's. After becoming their Power of Attorney and researching Alzheimer's and Dementia, their son Mark decided in late 2011 to begin work on starting The Johnny O Foundation for Alzheimer's and Dementia Awareness. Today John and Florence live in Sun City West, AZ.