ADRIAN - John William Condon, the local branch manager for a national loan company who moonlighted as a soda pop distributor, died yesterday in the Hospice of Lenawee here. He was 87.
Relatives said Mr. Condon died in his sleep and had been suffering from multiple health problems.
Born to Lambro and Rebecca Condon, Mr. Condon lived on the same property in Adrian all his life, building a two-story farmhouse with his brothers, Lambro and Louis Condon, after World War II that stood next to his parents' home.
The son of a railroad worker, he remembered watching his father throw chunks of coal to people standing beside the train tracks during the Depression so they could heat their homes, said Mr. Condon's son-in-law, Mark Werstler.
It was a time of bootleggers and Sunday afternoons spent flying kites, when the sight of a passing Ford Model T could attract a crowd - all memories that stood out for Mr. Condon as he aged, Mr. Werstler said.
Responsible for approving loans as the local manager of Trans America Financial Corp., Mr. Condon lent people money for new cars in an era before auto manufacturers had their own credit departments.
"Whenever we went out to eat in Adrian, people would come up to him, shake his hand, and say, "Mr. Condon, do you remember me?'●" Mr. Werstler said. "And he'd say, 'Yes,' even if he didn't. They'd say, 'You loaned me money to buy my first car.'●"
In addition to his job at Trans America, the St. Mary High School graduate distributed Canada Dry, among other brands of soda pop, and ran a mail route for several years, taking bulk mail between post offices. He worked for a fence company during World War II.
After retiring in 1982, Mr. Condon volunteered for the Meals on Wheels program at the Blissfield Senior Center and enjoyed planting tomatoes, Hungarian peppers, banana peppers, and onions.
He was a member of St. Joseph Catholic Church, Adrian.
Surviving are his wife, Nina, whom he married in October, 1949; son, Gary Condon; daughters, Patricia Lewandowski, Susan Hughes, Nancy Condon, and Christine Werstler; brothers, Lambro and Louis Condon; sister, Helen Burroughs; eight grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren.
The body will be in the Anderson Funeral Home, Adrian, after 3 p.m. tomorrow, with a prayer service at 7:30 p.m. in the mortuary. Visitation will resume at 9 a.m. Thursday in St. Joseph Catholic Church, where a funeral service will begin at 10 a.m.
The family suggests tributes to the Hospice of Lenawee, Adrian.