John Wesley Jones Jr., Harford County teacher

John Wesley Jones Jr., a retired Harford County public schools teacher who headed its teachers union, died of cancer Dec. 3 at his Bel Air home. He was 63.

Born in Baltimore and raised in the Jones Creek section of Sparrows Point, he was a 1967 graduate of Sparrows Point High School, where he played lacrosse and football and wrestled. He earned a bachelor's degree in geography from what is now Frostburg State University, where he also played football and lacrosse. He had a master's degree in liberal arts from the Johns Hopkins University.


As a young man, Mr. Jones worked at Bethlehem Steel Corp. at Sparrows Point. After attending the Harry Lundeberg School of Seamanship in Piney Point in St. Mary's County, he joined the merchant marine and served until 1974.

He then joined the Harford County Department of Education, teaching and coaching lacrosse, football and wrestling at Joppatowne High School. He then taught at North Harford High School and later became president of the Harford County Education Association. He retired in 2008.


Active in environmental causes, he was a beekeeper, and he fished and enjoyed the outdoors. He served on the board of directors of the Deer Creek Watershed Association. He also took a cross-country motorcycle and camping trip.

A Democrat, he ran unsuccessfully for a seat in the Maryland House of Delegates in 2010.

Services will be at 11 a.m. Friday at Bel Air United Methodist Church, 21 Linwood Ave., where he was a member.

Survivors include his wife of 33 years, the former Patricia V. Dashiell; a son, Derek H. Jones of Tampa, Fla.; a daughter, Rachel A. Slusher of Bel Air; and a sister, Elizabeth A. Jones of Baltimore.