Melvin Earl Quinn, 96, WWII vet, Armstrong retiree, wrote for LNP’s ‘I Know a Story’

By on June 13, 2018

Melvin Earl Quinn, of Lititz, passed away Sunday evening, June 3, 2018 at Lancashire Hall, Lancaster, PA, after a brief illness. He was 96.

Mel, as he was known locally to friends and family, was born in Jefferson County, Ill., on April 24, 1922, and lived in or around the country all his early life.

In 1942, Mel joined the U.S. Army Air Force, serving in the 8th Air Force, 15th Air Corps of the 761st bomb squadron. While stationed in Italy, he served his country in a supporting role, managing squadron payroll and cataloging airplane and vehicle parts for the unit.

Before deploying to Italy, Mel was stationed briefly in Wilkes Barre, where he met his future wife, Audrey. Upon leaving the service in 1945, he returned to Wilkes Barre to get married. In 1951, Mel took a job as a lab technician at Armstrong World Industries in Kankakee, Ill. In 1960, he was transferred to the Lancaster floor plant, where he worked until his retirement in 1976.

Remembered by his boys as the best dad they could have, Mel set a shining example of Christian virtue with steady nurturing, fair discipline, and lots and lots of love. A loyal family man with many friends, he was beloved by many and will be sorely missed.

Mel was a prolific writer and one of the first contributors to Lancaster Newspapers’ ongoing series, “I Know a Story.” He would go on to become a regular contributor to the publication. He belonged to several writing groups in the Central Pennsylvania area, and started one here in Lancaster. His love of words and writing inspired two more generations of book lovers and writers, and spawned at least three careers in the literary arts.

A country boy from birth, Mel enjoyed being close to nature and loved camping and traveling with his wife and family.

He is survived by his wife of 72 years: Audrey (Culp) Quinn of Lititz; three sons: Glen R. and his wife, Toni L. (Jacobson) Quinn of Lancaster; Robert L. Quinn of Crimora, Va.; and David G. Quinn of Ephrata; one sister: Francis “Fanny” Wilkey; four grandchildren: Justin, and his wife, Elizabeth A. (Rothan) Quinn of Millersville; Shasta C. Quinn and her husband, Damen Wood of Ocoee, Fla.; Mana (Quinn) and her husband, Matt Welsh of Charlottesville, Va.; and Willow (Quinn) and her husband, Maximilian Opheim of Fort Collins, Colo. He is also survived by four great-grandchildren: Rose and Lily Quinn, and Jacob and Simon Wood; and several nieces and nephews.

Mel was also preceded in death by two brother:, James and Evan Lee Johnston; and a son: Jeffrey E. Quinn.

A memorial service was held June 11 in the chapel at Brethren Village Retirement Community, Lititz. Interment at the Indiantown Gap National Cemetery, Annville, will be held at a later date for family only.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in the name of Melvin E. Quinn to any charity benefiting U.S. veterans.

To submit an online condolence, visit scheidfuneralhome.com. Scheid Funeral Home, Lancaster, was entrusted with the arrangements.

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