John Patrick Ryan, the eldest son of Margaret and John Ryan, and a lifelong resident of Larchmont, died at 85 in his home on October 22, 2010. A good student and outstanding athlete, John received thirteen scholarships and chose Notre Dame, where he briefly played football for the famed coach, Frank Leahy. He enlisted in the Army Air Corps. where he served for four years. On returning to civilian life, he joined his father’s Manhattan antique furniture firm, Smith & Watson, while completing his degree at Iona College.
In 1977, John assumed the presidency of Smith & Watson, and changed a small antique business into a world renowned manufacturer of 18th century reproduction furniture, redesigned to fit contemporary needs. Eight American presidents and numerous Fortune 500 companies were among his clients. He contributed many unique designs, some of which were award winning.
John could be seen every Saturday at the Larchmont Little League fields watching his granddaughters play. He was a weekly visitor to the Larchmont Library from age 4 until his death. After retiring, John became a member of the Old Guard of White Plains, where he was introduced to lawn bowling. Always competitive, he became an avid player and team captain.
John is survived by his wife, Niss, his daughter, Barbara Ryan Pilcher, a sister, Margot Ryan Quinn, two brothers, Kevin and Robert Ryan, a stepdaughter, Susan Houde-Walter, a stepson, Peter Houde, two grandchildren, Jessica Pilcher and Anne Pilcher Caceres, and one great- grandson, Oliver Edward Caceres. Contributions can be made to: Hospice and Palliative Care Center of Westchester, 311 North St, White Plains, NY. A Memorial Gathering is planned for November 7th. Please call Robert T. Ryan, Mamaroneck for details.