John Edward Bligh, 81

John Edward Bligh entered eternal life Friday, January 8, 2016 at his home. Predeceased by his dearly loved wife, Ellen O’Connor Bligh on March 6, 2015, John was the beloved father of James F. Bligh and Mary E. Bligh of Bethesda, Maryland, Thomas J. Bligh, Ph.D. of Frederick, Maryland, Michelle M. Bligh and Kevin M. Bligh of Ocean City, New Jersey.

Born June 22, 1934 in Washington, DC, the only child of Patrick J. Bligh, a native of Roscommon, Ireland, and Mary A. Cassidy Bligh of Danbury, Connecticut, John spent childhood summers vacationing in Atlantic City with his parents, developing a lifelong fondness for the beach and boardwalk.  He attended Holy Trinity Elementary School and St. John’s College High School, graduating in 1953.  John graduated from The Catholic University of America, Washington, DC in 1958 with a degree in Economics and he completed course work towards a Master’s degree.  On November 27, 1965, he married Ellen Elizabeth O’Connor at Our Lady of Lourdes Church in Bethesda, Maryland.  He spent his career employed by IBM both in Gaithersburg, Maryland and in South Jersey, first as a Senior Associate Systems Analyst and later as an Advisory Systems Analyst.  Many of his projects involved work at the Federal Aviation Administration Technical Center. 

His family and friends remember his kindness, his generosity, and his spirited humor.  He liked gardening and bird-watching with his family.  In retirement, he researched genealogical archives to trace his family’s history to County Roscommon and made several visits to Ireland with his wife and family.  John enjoyed traveling, working with computers, and socializing with good friends from The Catholic Club of Georgetown.  He served as President of the South Jersey Computer Club in 2002.

A devout Catholic and member of St. Damien Parish, he was a proud member of the Knights of Columbus, Msgr. James J. Zegers Council 9113.  John and Ellen regularly participated in the March for Life and the Happy Home Orphanage Walk-a-Thon to raise money for a girls’ orphanage in India. 

He is survived by his cherished cousins, Marge Archambault of Waterbury, Connecticut and Roger Cassidy of Florida; his in-laws Clare and Jack Coulter of Virginia; Sr. Jane O’Connor, MSBT, of Philadelphia; John and Barbara O’Connor of Connecticut; Brigid and Bob Frost of Connecticut; Damian O’Connor of Maryland; and Lucy Tannozini of Maryland.  His several nieces and nephews were dear to his heart.

A Mass of Catholic burial will be offered at 11 A.M. Friday morning at St. Augustine Church of St. Damien Parish at 13th and Wesley Avenue, Ocean City, NJ, where friends may call from 9:30 A.M. until time of Mass.  Interment will take place at Mount Olivet Cemetery in Washington, DC on Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Donations may be made in his name to Alzheimer’s Association, P.O. Box 96011, Washington, DC 20090-6011 or

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