John Stewart Morton Jr., real estate and insurance executive, dies

John Stewart Morton Jr., a retired real estate and insurance executive, died Aug. 3 of kidney failure at the Blakehurst retirement community in Towson.

The former Owings Mills resident was 92.

The son of a real estate broker and a homemaker, Mr. Morton was born in Baltimore and raised on Greenway in Guilford.

He was descended from William Gambrill, who landed in Southern Maryland in 1660 and for whom the town of Gambrills in Anne Arundel County is named, and John Morton, who fought as a captain with the 4th Virginia Regiment during the Revolutionary War.

Mr. Morton was a 1938 graduate of Episcopal High School in Alexandria, Va., and in 1940, enlisted with Battery D, 110th Field Artillery of the 29th Division.

During World War II, he served with an artillery unit in the Philippines and later in Bermuda. He was a lieutenant at the time of his discharge in 1946.

Mr. Morton remained in the Maryland National Guard until retiring as a lieutenant colonel in 1971.

He worked in real estate and insurance sales until retiring in the mid-1990s from John Stewart Morton Jr., successor company to Samuel P. Morton & Son, which had been established in 1868.

His directorships included Safety Perpetual Building & Loan Association, Metropolis Building Association, Real Estate Board of Greater Baltimore, Platt Manufacturing Co., Margaret Bennett Home and Planned Parenthood Association.

He enjoyed genealogy and collecting ancestral photographs.

His wife of 53 years, the former Lettice Lee Lyon, died in 2000.

A resident of Blakehurst for the past 12 years, Mr. Morton was a member of the Society of the Cincinnati, Society of Colonial Wars, Green Spring Valley Hunt Club, Bachelors Cotillon and the Gibson Island Club.

He was a communicant of St. Thomas Episcopal Church in Owings Mills, where services were held Wednesday.

Surviving are two sons, John S. Morton III of Cockeysville and Franklin L. Morton of Northfield, Ill.; a daughter, Lettice L. Rhodes of Raleigh, N.C.; and three grandchildren.