Retired Armstrong Rubber Company executive, John Breslin, died November 20th in New Haven after a brief illness. He was born in New York City August 2, 1923 to the late Margaret Schreiber and Hugh Breslin and grew up in Williston Park, Long Island at a time when farms and grand estates were neighbors. He graduated from Mineola High School and was the first person to receive a perfect score in geography on the New York State Regents Exam. In 1942, he joined the U.S. Army Air Corps assigned to weather intelligence. He served in England, France and Germany, working behind enemy lines to obtain accurate weather forecasts. He was among the first Americans to enter Seurre, France after liberation and made lifelong friendships there. Encouraged by his wartime buddies and with help from the GI Bill, he enrolled in Johns Hopkins University as an economics major. He was also elected president of his fraternity, Beta Theta Phi. After his graduation, he joined U.S. Rubber Company in New York as a young executive, and was soon recruited by Armstrong Rubber Company in West Haven as director of market research. He enjoyed a long and successful career at Armstrong and its successor company Armtek, where he rose to the position of Executive Vice President of Sales and Marketing. At Armstrong, he worked to establish the firm as one of the largest U.S. tire manufacturers, building a network of national and international distributorships, recruiting sports celebrities like Arthur Ashe, Roger Staubach and Tom Watson to serve as spokespersons and leading the company to open markets across the globe. During his tenure, Armstrong rose to become a Fortune 500 Company and was ultimately purchased by Pirelli Tire in 1986. A natural athlete, John was an avid golfer and longtime member of Racebrook Country Club where had many good friends. At college, he developed a keen interest in biblical history, and after retirement offered a seminar series at Our Lady of Assumption Church in Woodbridge where he was a communicant. John was also the first chair of the Conservation Commission Orange where he was instrumental in the Town's purchase of the Wepawaug Conservation Area. During his career and retirement, he enjoyed travel throughout the Americas, Europe, Asia, Australia, Egypt, and Israel. John is survived by his beloved wife of 59 years, Ruth Lyall Breslin and his daughter, Alexandra (Sandy) Breslin, both of Bethany, his sisters Betty Breslin, Maureen Munoz, and his brother, Eugene Breslin of Long Island, and his brother and sister-in-law George and Ingrid Lyall of Florida, along with many wonderful nieces and nephews. He was predeceased by his sister Miriam and brother-in-law, Michael O'Keefe. His integrity, warmth, and mischievous blue eyes will be missed by family and friends
Relatives and friends may call Friday from 4-7pm at the IOVANNE FUNERAL HOME, INC. 11 Wooster Pl. and are invited to attend a Mass of Christian Burial in Our Lady of Assumption Church, Center Rd. Woodbridge, Saturday morning at 11. Burial will be private. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Our Lady of Assumption Church 81 Center Rd., Woodbridge or to the Bethany Land Trust PO Box 3706 Woodbridge, CT 06525.
Read John Breslin's Obituary and Guestbook on iovanne.com.