Dr. John Gibson Blackmer
It is with heavy hearts and great sadness that we announce the passing of Dr. John Gibson Blackmer of Fredericton, NB on August 7, 2017 at the Dr. Everett Chalmers Hospital. John was born in New York on May 26, 1928, the son of Edwin and Marion Blackmer. He moved to Fredericton at age two.
He is survived by his wife and partner of 55 years, Dolores (née Greene) Blackmer and his son Jeffrey (Susan), as well as grandchildren Claire and Joseph. He was predeceased by his parents and his Aunt Lilly Blackmer.
A dentist by training, John completed a BSc at UNB in 1949 and a Doctor of Dental Surgery from Dalhousie in 1953. He practiced dentistry in Saint John where he also assisted in the operation of a dental clinic for low income children. John completed a Master's degree in public health at the University of Michigan in 1967. That same year he became the first full time appointment in dental public health at Dalhousie University and went on to become the head of the division of community dentistry. In 1970, John moved to Boston to become the director of student dental health and an assistant professor of social dentistry at Tufts University. While working at Tufts, he was offered a job as director of dental health with the government of New Brunswick and he returned home to Fredericton in 1972 and worked there for the rest of his career. He was a tireless advocate for dental public health, and travelled around the province providing mobile dental services for low income children who would not have otherwise been able to afford it. He was instrumental in introducing a fluoride mouth rinse program to the province in the 1970's. He also established public dental programs on the Caribbean islands of St. Kitts and Nevis. John spent summers at his beloved cottage, The Lodge, at Robertsons Point, where we was known by all for his unfailing dry sense of humour and friendliness. In his earlier days he enjoyed sports like basketball and tennis, as well as hunting and fishing with his father. Since retirement he spent time in Florida and going on cruises but mostly at his cottage at the lake. John was known for his kind heart and quiet dignity. Whether you were the bank president or the bank teller, he treated you equally, with kindness and respect.
We would like to sincerely thank the physicians and staff at the DECH, and in particular Dr. Jennifer Gillis-Doyle, Dr. Jill Hudson, Dr. Anan and Dr. Ann Collins for their kindness and compassion.
The funeral service will be held in the J. A. McAdam Memorial Chapel, 160 York Street, Fredericton on Friday August 11 at 2 pm followed by visitation and burial. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Marion Blackmer memorial chimes fund at St. Paul's United Church in Fredericton or the Dr. Everett Chalmers Hospital Foundation.