Jonathan Lee McGowan, ne Lee Jong Soo

Jonathan Lee McGowan, ne Lee Jong Soo, passed at his home in Venice after a lengthy illness.

            Jon was born on March 18, 1972 in Pusan, South Korea and adopted in 1978 by his parents, Sandy and Bob McGowan.

            Jonathan adapted to school quickly and graduated from Norwell High School, in Norwell, MA. Voted nicest guy to have around by his peers in his senior year, he was a member of the track team.

            He was diagnosed with leukemia just before he started his senior year of high school. This began his long journey with medical problems. Most of that year was spent at Children’s Hospital in Boston. When it was discovered that he would need a bone marrow transplant, his family found out there were very few Asians in the national registry. His family began trying to recruit donors of Asian descent and ended up running over 175 testing drives all over the US. When no adequate donor could be found, friends in Korea searched for and found his birth mother. She came to the US and donated her marrow to save his life.

            After the successful bone marrow transplant, Jon was able to attend and graduate with a degree in business from Babson College in Wellesley, MA. Jon was employed at State Street Financial for many years.

            During his time in the Boston area, Jon was a consummate volunteer with the Single Volunteers of Boston, where he served meals to the homeless, cleaned up the Charles River and helped at the Franklin Park Zoo.

            Jon was the most loving, caring son and friend to so many. He never judged anyone and all were equal in his sight. He always wanted peace.

            His summers were spent in Mattapoisett where he was a lifetime member of the Marion Mallet Club.

            In Venice, Florida, he was a volunteer at the Venice Theater and a member of the Sarasota Croquet Club.

            Jonathan leaves behind his parents, Sandy and Bob McGowan of Venice, his birth mother, Lee Noh Sook of Ilsan, South Korea,

            Sister, Kelly Ochoa and her daughters, Daniela and Nicole of Fairhaven MA, Sister Heather McGowan and her wife, Pat Coryell of Gulfport, FL, Melissa Kang and her husband Will, and daughters, Chloe and Isabella, and son Liam of Cumming, GA. Brother Jonas Landstrom of Denver, CO and adopted sister, Petra Duke of Cape Coral, FL.

            Besides his family, Jon leaves his devoted companion, Sophie, a rescue lab and his best friend Charlie Shoup, his neighbor.

            Jon as a young boy wanted to be an astronaut and attended two summers at Space Camp in Huntsville, AL. He was cremated and some of his ashes will be sent up in space at his request.

            There will be a celebration of life at his home in Venice in January.

            A later Memorial Service will be held in Norwell MA next summer.

            Donations in his memory may be made to the Venice Theater, Dana Farber Cancer Institute or a charity of your choice.

2 Responses to “Jonathan Lee McGowan, ne Lee Jong Soo”

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  1. Monica M. says:

    Jon was an incredible person. We met when we were both in college so many years ago. He was funny and kind. Good memories. I’m so very sorry for his family.

  2. Great Zeta says:

    In realms where shadows softly creep,
    Lived Casper, in dreams, a secret keep.
    The friendly ghost, with heart so bright,
    Brought warmth to every darkened night.

    His laughter echoed in the breeze,
    A playful spirit, eager to please.
    With arms wide open, he’d embrace,
    All who sought his gentle grace.

    Through whispered winds and moon’s soft glow,
    Casper danced where dreams would flow.
    In tales and legends, his name would soar,
    A beacon of kindness forevermore.

    Though now he’s crossed the starry veil,
    His essence lingers, a timeless tale.
    In hearts he touched, his light still gleams,
    Guiding us through shadowed streams.

    So let us cherish memories dear,
    Of Casper, whose spirit was ever near.
    Though he’s departed, his love remains,
    In whispered winds and gentle refrains.

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