BETHEL, Conn. — John "Jack" Dietter died Wednesday morning, Nov. 9, at his home in Bethel. He was 83.
A longtime resident of Bethel, he was born in Maybrook, N.Y., where he enjoyed adventures with his close friends, Pucci and Gigi. Son of Mary and Frederick Dietter, he spent many hours as a teen working with his dad on the New Haven Railroad.
After graduating from the University of Bridgeport in 1956 with a bachelor's in industrial relations, Dietter served in the U.S. Navy, stationed on Midway Island. Following his naval service, he began work in the aerospace and military defense industries, working principally for Loral Electronics and Perkin Elmer where, among other responsibilities, he helped recruit the engineers and scientists who worked on lunar modules and the Hubbell Space Telescope.
Dietter settled in Bethel in 1959 and became active in the community. He served as a volunteer firefighter in the Stony Hill Fire Department and Fire Marshal for the town of Bethel. First elected to the Bethel Board of Finance in 1959, he served into his late 70s. He also acted as a mentor to many in Bethel.
In his later years, Dietter worked closely with his friend, Dr. Fand, to build the Independent Party of Connecticut, rising to the position of chairman. Besides his involvement in local and state politics, he also enjoyed following and discussing politics at every level.
He is survived by his daughters, Denise Scharf and her husband Cliff, Dina Valenti and her husband Lou, and Diedra Dietter-Schultz and her husband Michael; sons, John Dietter and his wife Jennifer, and Michael Dietter and his wife Pamela; 11 grandchildren; his devoted caregiver Lydia; and his Dietter cousins in Millerton and Pine Plains, NY. He was predeceased by Gloria (Boldrin) Dietter, the mother of his five children; and his sisters, Marion Crowe and Kathleen Andrews.
A memorial gathering to celebrate his life will be held Sunday, Nov. 20, at 1 p.m., at the Stony Hill Fire Department. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to the Stony Hill Fire Department.
Jowdy-Kane Funeral Home, 9-11 Granville Ave., Danbury is in charge of arrangements.