Cover photo for John Conover's Obituary
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1923 John 2014

John Conover

August 19, 1923 — June 1, 2014

John Martin Conover Jr. Was born to John Martin Conover Sr. And Harriet Smithy Conover on August 19, 1923 in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. John was the first of three children and grew up near the south Jersey shore in Linwood and Pleasantville, with a brother, Sterling Dale Conover, and sister, Mary Louise Victoria Conover.
John graduated from Pierre S. DuPont High School in Wilmington, Delaware and enlisted in the Army Air Corps. He served as a pilot in WWII. While stationed at Gowen Field in Boise, Idaho, he met and married Betty Ring in Buhl on October 28, 1945. John attended North Carolina State University, University of Delaware, and Ohio State University before he accepted a return commission in the U.S. Air Force. He and Betty were sent to Japan for three years for the Occupation. John then served in Korea, and later, the Air Force Reserves. John retired as a Colonel in 1983 with 42 years of service. John was a proud member of the Greatest Generation and a patriot. John passed away on Sunday, June 1, 2014. He was almost 91 years old.
John finished his college at Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Dairy Management. By this time, he and Betty had two daughters. Miriam Elizabeth Conover was born during their stay in Japan and Marilyn Louise Conover was born during a stay in Buhl. After graduation, John took a job with the Carnation Company and they lived in Hillsboro, Oregon. The next year, the family moved to Buhl.
John loved the wide-open spaces of Idaho, and he particularly enjoyed the company of Betty's dad, Russ Ring, a Danish, early pioneer in Buhl. John worked as an assistant manager at Pet Milk in Buhl, and then as an animal feed nutritionist at Rangen, Inc. He saved his money carefully to fulfill his lifetime ambition to buy his own farm. He designed the Conover home on Ring Corner and the family moved there in 1960. John loved Idaho and his farm and always spoke of how happy he was living here.
In 1968, John started Conover's Chalet Candy Company with stores in Boise and Buhl. Jeanene Frazier was his loyal friend and business partner in the candy business. Many people knew John as "The Candy Man." The Conover Candy trailer at the Twin Falls County Fair had people lined up for John's famous caramel bars and caramel puffs. Conover Chalet Candies was bought by John's good friends, Martha Busmann and Barbara Sackett in 1984.
John was an avid golfer and belonged to the Jerome Country Club for many years. He was particularly happy when he shot his age at 68. John's golfing trips to California with his buddy, Bert Higgins from Boise, were great fun. John and his wife Betty are both members of Holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Buhl. John was a member of the Air Force Association and QBs.
John is survived by his wife of 68 years, Betty; his daughters, Liz Conover of Walla Walla, Washington, and Marilyn (Jeffrey) Conover Watt of Bellevue, Washington; grandchildren and great grandchildren, Kevin (Tara Matthews) Watt and their sons, Luke and Andrew, Katie (Charles) Watt McClintock, and their son and one more son on the way; sister, Mary Lou Holmes, of Omaha Nebraska, and her children and grandchildren; niece, Dale (George)Conover Semak, from Houston, Texas, and her children and grandchildren; and his cousin, Arthur Conover, from Pleasantville, New Jersey.
John was preceded in death by his parents; brother, Sterling Conover; nephew, Glenn Conover; and his brother-in-law, Keith W. Holmes Sr.
The family plans a memorial service for John at 2:00p.m., Saturday, June 14, 2014 at the Ascension Episcopal Church in Twin Falls Idaho.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to holy Trinity Episcopal Church in Buhl, or the Charity of your choice.

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