John Haines Hardison, of Frederick, MD, died at Frederick Health Hospital of cardiac arrest on September 17, 2021, 4 days short of his 80th birthday. He was born in Montgomery, AL, on September 21, 1941 to Clayton H. and Mae (Winter) Hardison. He is preceded in death by his parents and his brother, William G. Hardison. He is survived by his sister, Elizabeth L. Hardison of Lynchburg, VA.
He had fond memories of visiting his cousins in Maine as a child where he enjoyed hiking and other outdoor activities. He spent his career working night shifts for two different newspapers in Washington, DC. After retirement he moved first to the Richmond, VA area, then to the Thurmont, MD area, and finally to Frederick, MD. He retained a love of the outdoors and spent much time the first 1 O years of retirement traveling the country, sleeping in the back of his SUV. Until he needed a cane to walk, he enjoyed hiking at Cunningham Falls and kicking the leaves in the autumn. Even as his mobility decreased, he still enjoyed taking walks outdoors, which he did as much as he was able. He also enjoyed writing short stories and poems, many of which he posted on PoetrySoup.
He was a member of New Hope Orthodox Presbyterian Church in Frederick, MD for roughly 7 years preceding his death. Although he was never married and had no children, the church was his family, where he deeply loved many and was loved by many in return. He had a wonderful sense of humor, and used to joke that he had 79 maladies, one for every year of his life. Even when he arrived at New Hope, one of his maladies was impaired speech due to Parkinson's disease. Although this was a real frustration to him, he did not give up. He would still come up to people and talk, or sometimes just listen. He was kind to children, and would make sure he had a new joke to tell them each week. Those who took up email correspondence with him were richly rewarded by his profound insights and his great sense of humor, which were so difficult for him to communicate in speech, but which flowed freely in his writing. He was a great example to the congregation of perseverance. He would often say, "Have a good day or keep on trying. We have but two choices. Only two." He lived with much pain and frustration due to his health issues, yet he made a conscious choice to have a good day by putting his trust in the Lord and casting his cares on him. It is this Lord whose face he now beholds. He will be dearly missed by the congregation.
He was also active in his community at Creekside in Frederick, MD, where he took part in many events, such as Bible studies and bingo and canasta games. He made many friends there with his humor and kindness, and will be dearly missed by them.
Services will be held on October 16 at New Hope Orthodox Presbyterian Church, 5305 Jefferson Pike, Frederick, MD 21703, with a viewing at 10:00 AM and a funeral service at 10:30 AM.
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