John Albert O’Rorke, part of the greatest generation, died in his home on January 6, 2019, surrounded by his loving family. He was a WWII and Korean War Veteran, friend, devoted husband and beloved father, who will be greatly missed. John was known for his kindness, generosity, sense of humor and a fine scotch whiskey.
He was born May 30, 1926 to Patrick and Mamie O’Rorke and grandson of Idaho Pioneers, the Hannifin’s. He attended St Joseph’s school, North Jr. High and Boise High School, where he was a star football and basketball player.
Upon graduation, he joined the US Navy and saw action as a Seabee in the Pacific Theatre. Celebrating VJ day in Hawaii was one of his lifetime memories.
After the war, he returned to Boise and attended B.J.C. During this time he met a nurse from South Dakota which became the one and only love of his life, Irene (Mike) Mikkelson. They celebrated 70 years of marriage. Their secret was to occasionally disagree, but never to end the day angry.
He was one of the first members of the newly formed Idaho Air National Guard. There he was activated for the Korean War and stationed at numerous locations. After the Korean War he returned to Boise to become the Chief Sergeant of Supply. Along with his wife, Irene, they raised a family of three kids. John loved sports and another lifetime memory was traveling to South Bend, IN to watch a Notre Dame Football game. John loved golf and was one of the first members of Shadow Valley G.C. He did get a hole in one at Terrace Lake G.C.; which he often reminded us of.
John and Mike traveled the world with his sister Maykay and husband Jeb Halliburton. They saw Rome, Norway, Ireland, Normandy Beach and visited daughters Janice and Teri in England and Florida.
John was a people person who made life time friends wherever he went. He worked hard but played harder. He always had a joke and made every one of his doctor’s laugh and smile as he fought his brave battle against cancer.
John was a member of St Marks Church and an Elk for 62 years. He is survived by his wife Irene, daughter Janice and son Pat. He is proceeded in death by his daughter Teri, brothers Charles and Jerry, sister Maykay and Irene, and parents Patrick and Mamie O’Rorke.
In lieu of flowers please send contributions to The Idaho Humane Society or The Knights of Columbus—Wheelchair Mission.
A viewing will take place on Friday, January 11, 2019 from 5-7pm at Cloverdale Funeral Home Chapel. A funeral service will take place on Saturday, January 12, 2019 at 10am at St. Marks Catholic Church with a graveside to follow at Dry Creek Cemetery.