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John Chatham Howard, Jr. “Chat” passed peacefully at his home, surrounded by his loved ones. A native Savannahian, Chat grew up in the Parkside and Ardsley Park areas and graduated from Savannah High School in 1960. He then signed up to serve his country in the US Coast Guard Reserves.
Chat started his career in plumbing supplies with PlumRite before founding Sandpiper Supply in 1977. He and his wife, Carol, ran the company and eventually welcomed their children, Chat III and Christy into the business. In his spare time, Chat was very active in the Irish Community in Savannah, from hosting Irish Olympic athletes to serving on the Parade Committee for 40 years. He was a Past Secretary and a Past Adjutant and was the recipient of the first Harry Deal Award for his service to the Parade Committee. He could be seen every St. Patrick’s Day working before sunrise at the Cathedral to the very end of the parade at “his” corner at Abercorn & Harris Street. He was a Past President of the Irish Heritage Society and a proud member of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick.
He loved his family, his church, his city and his Irish heritage. He was an active member of the Cathedral Basilica of St John the Baptist where for many years he served as head usher for the 11:30 mass. Chat was a receipent of the Bishop Gartland Award from the Savannah Diocese for his gracious service to his parish and the diocese. His favorite second “career” was spending time with his grandchildren. Ireland always held a special place in his heart and he visited as often as he could, often playing the Jameson Golf Tournament while there.
He was preceded by his parents, John Chatham Howard and Vivian Allen Howard. Chat is survived by his loving and patient wife of 54 years, Carol; his children Christy Ellis (Marty) and Chat Howard III (Tricia); and four grandchildren Elizabeth (Andrue) Cooper, Andrew Howard, Caroline Howard and Haley Ellis; his sister, Linda Pounds and her son, Earen (Catherine).
As a past president of the BC Athletic Association, the family suggests that you consider making a donation in Chat's memory to Benedictine Military School, 6502 Seawright Drive, Savannah, GA 31406, or St. Vincent’s Academy, 207 East Liberty Street, Savannah, GA 31401.
Visitation was held from 5:00 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 8, 2023, at Fox & Weeks Funeral Directors, Hodgson Chapel. A Rosary Service will follow at 6:30 p.m.
Mass of Christian Burial was celebrated at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, Oct. 9, 2023, at Cathedral Basicila of St. John the Baptist. A private burial will be held in Bonaventure Cemetery.