LANCASTER - John M. Hughes, of Lancaster, Wisconsin, passed away peacefully on March 8, 2022, surrounded by his loving family at his home. He was diagnosed with an aggressive form of liver cancer on January 31, 2022, and while all courses of action were considered, nothing could be done to stop it. John was born the first of three sons on September 20, 1939, to Reuben M. and Pearl M. (McCutchin) Hughes, in Dodgeville, Wisconsin. Upon graduating from Dodgeville High School in 1957, he attended the University of Wisconsin, Madison and graduated from the school of pharmacy in 1961. Following his pharmacy internship in Kenosha, Wisconsin, John became a registered pharmacist in 1962. While at UW Madison, he participated in the four-year advanced ROTC program and was proud of being named a Distinguished Military Student. John was commissioned a 2nd Lieutenant in the U.S. Army and entered active service in July of 1962. He was first deployed to the 28th General Hospital Unit in La Rochelle, France. Following his promotion to 1st Lieutenant, John was named Commanding Officer of the 555th Medical Company in Croix Chapeau, France. In April of 1964 his company was reassigned to Fort Dix, New Jersey, where they were ordered to begin an intensive training program to enable them to handle casualties of any kind and be prepared to deploy anywhere in the world with little-to-no notice. They were clearly preparing for the coming war in Vietnam. John was honorably discharged from active duty on October 28, 1964. In addition to his service to our country, John was a member of the Richard Burns American Legion Post 109 for more than 50 years. After the military, he moved to Lancaster, Wisconsin, where John and his cousin David, a fellow pharmacist, decided to open Hughes Pharmacy together in 1965. Equipped with his life-long sense of adventure and an Alfa Romeo he had acquired while overseas, he became a man about town. In February of 1966, he met the love of his life, Pearl R. Ruchti, whom he married in December of that year and together they had Rich (1970) and Jayne (1973). Never one to sit still for long, John tried to (and pretty much did) “do it all.” He became an avid recreational pilot, a highly skilled outdoorsman, enjoyed motorcycling, boating, snowmobiling, skiing and traveling. There was not a dull moment to be found. He “retired” from Hughes Pharmacy in 2000, but continued to work part-time for years to follow, helping staff the county hospital/clinic pharmacy as well as Hughes Pharmacy under its new ownership. John maintained his pharmacy license until 2018! He and Pearl enjoyed wintering in the Destin, Florida area for the first few years of retirement, but eventually settled in Tucson, Arizona where they have wintered for the last seven years and have met a number of new, close friends. Being avid boaters, John and Pearl have spent significant portions of their summer days living on their boat in beautiful Sister Bay, Wisconsin. He was a kind and loving husband, father and friend and will be missed by many.
John is survived by his loving wife, Pearl; a son, Rich (Amy) Hughes; a daughter, Jayne (Jeff) Berry; and brother, Tom (Maureen) Hughes.
In addition to his parents, Reuben and Pearl, John was preceded in death by a brother, Robert Hughes.
In keeping with John's wishes, there will be no formal services. Martin Schwartz Funeral Home & Crematory in Lancaster is assisting the family. Memorials can be sent in John's memory to the Grant County Humane Society, 222 Roosevelt Street, Lancaster, WI 53813, https://grantcountyhumanesociety.com and/or the Lancaster Community Fund, PO Box 81, Platteville, WI 53818, https://cfsw.org/funds/lancaster-community-fund/