John Dennis Hughes, 66, of Sunnyside passed away on Tuesday, Jan. 31, 2012, surrounded by his loving family.
John was born March 2, 1945 in La Grande, Ore., the son of Fredrick Manson and Dorothy Velma (Wilmers) Hughes.
The first 10 years of John's life were spent in a logging camp in La Grande. He with his family moved to Hillsboro, Ore., where John completed his education and graduated from Hillsboro High School with the class of 1963. He later earned his Master's degree in social work from Portland State University. During this time he married Ann McBride in Portland, Ore., and they had two sons, Joseph and Michael.
On June 30, 1984 he married Regina Harroun in Vancouver.
Most of John's working career was in private practice and he was the pioneer in developing school-based student assistance and adolescent treatment services throughout Washington state. From 2001 to 2010, John was the Safe and Effective Schools Director for the Sunnyside School District and after retirement he contracted with the school district to provide direct services to students. He was responsible for writing a grant which aided in the establishment of a school-based health center for the Sunnyside School District. John worked for a period of time in the Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction (O.S.P.I.) and also for the Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) in Demand Reduction, where he worked with U.S. government leaders and governors.
John was instrumental in developing policies and programs that assisted in the reduction of illegal substance abuse. During John's distinguished career he has served in multiple capacities to include: Director of Drug Education Department and Student Assistance program in Bremerton, Director for Youth and Family programs, Youth Consultant for St. Joseph Adolescent Inpatient Drug Treatment program, coordinator Teen Drug and Alcohol Intervention program, Senior Prevention manager, Demand Reduction Section and the Drug Enforcement Administration in Arlington, Va.
He was a member of the Yakima Unity Church and Sunnyside's Promise.
John enjoyed bird hunting, hiking, backpacking, spending time in the out-of-doors, horseback riding and golfing. He was an avid runner, competing in various marathons. Biking and exercise were a daily part of John's life.
He was a very humble man, who cherished every person he came in contact with, be it family member, co-worker, student or friend.
He is survived by his loving wife, Regina Hughes of Sunnyside; three sons, Joseph Hughes of Philadelphia, Pa., Michael Hughes of Portland, Ore. and Jack (Dana) Harroun of Vancouver; two daughters, Autumn (Tom) Gray of Poway, Calif. and Windy (Kevin) Hardee of Bainbridge Island; seven grandchildren, and a baby granddaughter that is on her way; one brother, Tom (Gail) Hughes of Hillsboro, Ore.; and two stepsisters, Kathy and Sandra.
He was preceded in death by his parents, and one stepsister, Sharon.
A Celebration of Life memorial service will be held Saturday, Feb. 4, 2012, at 3 p.m. at Sunnyside Presbyterian Church.
Those wishing to honor John's memory may contribute to the John Hughes Memorial, c/o Sunnyside School District for Student Health Programs, 1110 S. Sixth St., Sunnyside, WA 98944.
Those wishing to sign John's on-line memorial book may do so at www.funeralhomesmith.com
Smith Funeral Home Ltd. and Crematory in Sunnyside is in charge of arrangements.