John Gregory Fox, II

With his bright, literary mind, John Fox saw the humor in life and could make anyone laugh. He died in the Milton home where he grew up. He was 52.

Mr. Fox was a natural storyteller with a boyish laugh, unafraid of crudeness and often pulling from the deep well of his memory. One of his earliest memories was of his mother lying by him as he tried sleeping off a fever. He awoke feeling better and stretched out his hand toward her through the bars of his crib. The two had a close relationship throughout her life.

“The way his mind worked was amazing,” said his brother, Michael Fox. “He could just see something… and all of a sudden he’d just come up with this whole repertoire about life in that situation. He just had this funny wit about him. He’d just make my mother laugh to pieces.”

Mr. Fox was attracted to beauty and creativity. He took up gardening, loved flowers, drank in fiction, acted in plays, and enjoyed black-and-white photography. Working as a restaurant waiter throughout his life, he was fascinated by food and reflected in his home the kitchen tools and tips he picked up from chefs. For a family feast, he once aged beef in his garage. Instead of slippers, he wore kitchen clogs around the house.

He worked at many restaurants in the Capital Region — among them Glen Sanders Mansion in Schenectady and Hall of Springs in Saratoga — as well as in San Diego, California, where he lived most his adult life.

When Mr. Fox was a child, the family spent summers in St. Lawrence County where his parents owned a pair of former dairy farms. As a small boy, he enlisted to help in the kitchen of his grandmother, who was the village baker in Richville, New York. She bought him a small mixer for Christmas.

The farm in later years hosted family reunions, where campfires were his stage. He would embellish shared stories and use caricatured voices to make relatives laugh at themselves.

“He was on, so to speak,” said his sister Sheila Sullivan. “He was the entertainer of the group.”

He took acting very seriously from middle school through college, and he played a range of dramatic parts, said Wendy Guida, a friend since they met at orientation at the University of Albany. Among his roles were Chief Bromden in “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” Malvolio in Shakespeare’s “Twelfth Night,” and Orestes in the “Oresteia.”

Mr. Fox was born in Wisconsin on April 25, 1965, the youngest of three siblings, to parents Audrey (née Wood) and John Fox. The family moved back to New York to be near relatives and for his father’s work as an electrician.

He graduated from Ballston Spa High School in 1983. He earned associate degrees in liberal arts and computer information science from San Diego City College and a bachelor of arts degree from San Diego State University. In later years, he took graduate-level courses at the College of Saint Rose to become an English teacher.

John Gregory Fox, II is survived by two siblings, Sheila Sullivan, and her husband Bill Sullivan; and Michael Fox, and his wife Lolly Fox. He is also survived by five nephews, Gregory Fox, Patrick Fox, Nicholas Fox, Vito Iaia, and Marcello Iaia.

A memorial service will be held at 11 a.m. on May 11 at St. Peter’s Cemetery, 150 West Ave, Saratoga Springs, New York 12866.

Guest Book

Lisa Joy Tichenor Staulters

Johnny as most of us called him. The neighborhood crowd. I truly liked this guy. We sat on the bus and he would just pick on me. I was quiet. I loved his talent. Now the angels all get to sing and dance and act on the streets of gold with John Fox.

God bless the family and comfort those who crossed Johnny's path he was a special soul who touched us all.

Love, Tish

Linda Voehringer

Sorry to hear of the passing of John. He left this world too soon. My condolences to his family, especially to his brother Mike and his sister Sheila.

Diane M. Lewis

I also graduated with John from BSHS and will always remember his quick wit, his laugh and the joy he was to be around. My condolences to his family and friends and to all who loved him.

Tammy Marshall Moore

John and I grew up a few streets away, and we were born two days apart. In high school, he would give me rides in his yellow VW. I remember his smile, his laugh, and being a true and caring riend.

My thought, prayers and condolences to his family and friends. Love ya, John!

Lisa Puckhaber

Sorry to hear of John's passing. He was a fun guy in high school and will be missed. Seems too young to leave us. Blessings are sent to his family and friends.