Two men standing on either side of a counter in a general goods store

Henry Reed Ferrill and son, John, in his general merchandise store in Albion, 1910 – 1915. A pile of pants are folded behind John and father, Henry, stands behind the counter. A wide brim hat hangs on the wall and several boots hang from the ceiling.  Numerous shoe boxes are stacked in the background, some made by “Buckingham & Hecht,” a large San Francisco shoe manufacturer. (Gift of Jim and Judy Tarbell, Lloyd Henry Ferrill Collection, Kelley House Photographs)

May 9, 1968 – John H. Ferrill died at St. Mary’s Hospital in San Francisco at the age of 71, following a short illness. Born in Manchester on Christmas Eve in 1896, he was the youngest son of Henry Reed Ferrill, who operated the general merchandise store in Albion.

John graduated from Mendocino High School in 1915 and enrolled in the University of California at Berkeley. His studies were interrupted while he served in France for a year during World War I, but he returned to the university after the war and graduated in 1920.

Immediately following his graduation, he accepted a position as a marine adjuster with the firm of Johnson and Higgins, Limited. According to the Beacon, “For 42 years he was an esteemed and faithful member of the Brokerage and Insurance firm of Johnson and Higgins, retiring in 1962. During that time he assessed damage for many admiralty cases concerning marine disasters on the high seas.”

John’s survivors included his wife and high school sweetheart, Frances C. Ferrill (the former Frances Buchanan of Elk); one son, retired Navy Commander John W. Ferrill of Washington, D. C.; and two brothers, Lloyd F. Ferrill of San Francisco, and William V. Ferrill of Mendocino.

A Requiem Mass was said at St. Ignatius Church, San Francisco, with military graveside honors and burial at the Catholic Cemetery in Santa Clara. He was laid to rest near his beloved Jesuit son, Brother William Ignatius Ferrill, Society of Jesus, who predeceased him.

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