One comment on “Jovan Andrijasevic

  1. Jovan Andrijasevic was born in Visili, Grahovo, Montenegro on 15 Jan 1889.  His father was named Mihajl.  Jovan graduated from the Grahovo gymnasium at 16 years of age, where he specialized in mathematics.  He then attended medical preparatory school in Moscow, Russia for 15 months.  All opportunities and dreams vanished as a result of the political unrest of the time.  In about 1907, like so many of his countrymen, Jovan immigrated to the United States where, despite his education, he became a laborer in the iron, coal and gold mines.  He became John Andrich and worked his way to Denver, Colorado.  In April 1917, he enlisted in the US Army two days after the United States entered World War I.  He served in the Pacific, was injured and returned home.  In 1919 he became a U.S. citizen based on his military service.  He married Neioma Fern Allen, the daughter of Colorado pioneers, on 15 Sep 1919; and he continued working in the mines.  In 1921, he partook of educational opportunities for WWI military veterans and was graduated from the University of Colorado in applied electrical engineering.  He was hired by the Bureau of Reclamation as an operator at a Bureau power plant at Pavilion, Wyoming, where he lived and worked for 36 years.   He eventually became the supervisor of the plant.  He lived a good life with his wife "Fern," being blessed with two children, a home, an interesting job, and a generous retirement.  He had time to enjoy his lifelong passions for music and gardening, as well as many warm friendships.  He was a leader in a number of fraternal organizations, e.g., Masons, Knights Templar, Order of Eastern Star, American Legion, and American Red Cross, through which he actively worked to benefit the community.  He sold $70,000 in U.S. Savings bonds during World War II, an achievement for which he received a special award from the U.S. Secretary the Treasury.  He was a member of the local school board.  He was devoted to his Eastern Orthodox religion throughout his life, despite having no such parishes within the area.  He kept to his faith by attending the available Protestant churches in the area and helped the community build an Episcopal Church.  John and Fern, my grandparents, retired in 1957 to a new home in Shoshoni, Wyoming.  John Andrich died of a heart attack in 1964, in the process of preparing his garden for its spring planting.  He is buried alongside Fern in the Mountain View Cemetery in Riverton, Wyoming, with the spectacular Absaroka Mountains standing guard in the distance.  The grand mountains of Wyoming surely reminded him of his home in Montenegro.

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