Published in The Washington Post on January 31, 2013
JOHN MONROE FIRMIN (Age 100) Peacefully departed
this life on January 27, 2013.
Beloved husband of Jean L. Firmin who passed away in June
2012. Father to John (Jack) Firmin of Greenbelt, MD, Joan Garcia
(Arnald) of McCormick, SC, James Firmin (Linda) of Moss Point,
MS, and Jeffrey Firmin (Frances) of Albany, NY. Grandad to 10
grandchildren and 13 great-grandchildren.
John graduated from McKinley Tech High School in 1931,
where he was a long distance runner. He graduated in Civil
Engineering from the University of Maryland in 1936, where he
was a member of Sigma Chi Alpha fraternity. He served in the
Army in 1936/37.
He worked in the building construction and estimating field in the Washington D.C. area for 37
years. Notably, he worked on the building of the Pentagon and National Gallery of Art, and many
private office buildings.
He was active in the community as president of two different public school PTA's. He attended
Petworth, Northwest Washington, Bethany, and Montgomery Hills Baptist Churches. He was
very active in those churches, and held a number of significant positions in the Church laity
including Secretary and Treasurer of the D.C. Baptist Foundation where he was a member for
50 years, a member of the Board of Trustees of the Baptist Home from 1962-1992 including
President for 8 years, and President of the DC Baptist Convention 1959-60. He was deeply
involved in the establishment and construction of Thomas House Baptist Home on Thomas
Circle and instrumental in the formation and construction of Bethany Baptist Church at 14th and
He met his beloved wife Jean in the youth group at Petworth Church, and they were married for
75 years, and lived in a house in Takoma Park, MD for 71 years.
As a devoted Christian, all his life he tended to and assisted people who needed comfort and
A Memorial Service to celebrate his life will be held at Montgomery Hills Baptist Church, 9727
Georgia Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20910 on Saturday, February 2, at 2 p.m.
In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Montgomery Hills Baptist Church.