John William Little peacefully breathed his last with his wife and life partner of forty-one years resting beside him. He was born two days before Pearl Harbor on December 5, 1941, in Worcester, Massachusetts, lived fully for seventy-seven years, and passed away early in the morning on January 13, 2019 in his home.
“Jack,” as he is more commonly remembered, spent his youth riding bicycles and playing baseball. His love of music found him teaching piano lessons by the age of seventeen. By twenty-three, he was the proud father of his first daughter. One time, he “bought a brand new, candy-apple-red, 1962 Ford Galaxy convertible…drove it straight off the showroom floor, down Route 66, all the way to California.” A talented cook, he moved to Vermont in the summer of 1976, where he met his wife. Together, they opened and operated a diner named ‘Dot’s Restaurant’ for four years before moving to Syracuse, N.Y. Never a fan of winter, Jack moved with his family to Crozet in the summer of 1991 where they have lived ever since.
An active member of the community, he performed in local theater, coached many youth soccer teams, and served as a lector at church on Sundays. His brain devoured numbers, and he pursued a career in real estate for over 30 years across three states. Forever a spirited conversationalist, he was rarely told to speak up. His booming New England accent could often be heard discussing topics from Buddha and black holes, to the fine details of making a classic marinara. At seventy, he became a black belt in American Chito-Ryu Karate, making him the oldest ever to achieve this rank in his discipline. In the last years of his life, Jack continued one of his favorite hobbies by amazing friends and family alike with brilliant magic tricks.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Lenny and Elsie Little. He is survived by his wife Debbi Meslar-Little of Crozet; daughter Johnna Little of Holden, Mass.; daughter Tia and son-in-law Jason Rounds of Hebron, Conn.; son Nicholas Little of Crozet; grandchildren Micaela, Gianna, and Benjamin Rounds of Hebron, Conn.; sister Hyla and brother-in-law Phil Hunt of Holden, Mass. He leaves behind many more nieces, nephews, great nieces, great nephews, and sisters- and brothers-in-law.
A funeral Mass was held Saturday, January 19, 2019 at the Crozet Field School. Jack will be laid in his final resting place at Cool Spring Natural Cemetery in Berryville, Va.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that memorial contributions be made to Hospice of the Piedmont, 675 Peter Jefferson Parkway, Suite 300, Charlottesville, VA 22911, hopva.org, for their compassion and care.
Jack’s love for his wife was rivaled only by the love for his children. He will be sorely missed.