Cover photo for John C. Compere's Obituary
John C. Compere Profile Photo
1929 John 2023

John C. Compere

July 15, 1929 — March 25, 2023

Auburn, Indiana

John C. Compere passed peacefully on March 25, 2023, in Auburn, IN.

He was born on July 15, 1929 and grew up in Chicago, IL, the middle son of Dr. Edward L. (A world-renowned Orthopedic Surgeon) and Virginia (Odell) Compere.  He had two brothers, Edward (Ted) and James.

On graduating from Beloit Business College in Wisconsin, he enlisted in the US Air Force, where he graduated as 2nd Lieutenant in the US Air Force and spent some time in Kaiserslautern, Germany. With WWII ending, he was able to leave early with an Honorable Discharge.

He started his professional career as an insurance underwriter and then in management for JC Penny Company.  He met and married his wife Jean Reynolds in Minneapolis in 1954.   After a couple of moves, he opened, operated and managed a Ben Franklin Variety store from 1958 to 1962. 

Feeling the entrepreneurial itch, he and Jean opened their first “Compere Fabrics” store in Southland Shopping Center.  Over the next 28 years, their business continued to grow and eventually expanded to three stores in Kalamazoo.  He was also part developer and owner of West Hills Tennis and Athletic Club which was eventually sold to Western Michigan University. Later in life, he also owned other businesses, including ExecuSearch Recruiting and All American Hero.

He loved playing tennis and golf.  He also became an avid pilot, owning and flying his own airplanes.  He held single and multi-engine licenses and was instrument rated.  He also enjoyed getting together with his longtime friends for their standing monthly neighborhood card games.  He was a lifelong Chicago White Sox, Bears and Michigan University sports fan that he enjoyed together with Jean, his wife and his daughter Randi.

He and Jean were able to celebrate 60 years of marriage together before the passing of Jean in 2015.  Their marriage was one of respect and love and they were blessed with 3 children that they loved very much.   

He is survived by his brother James (wife Dode), daughter Randi (husband Peter), son Jim, son Tom (wife Beverly), five grandchildren (Martin (wife Mollie), Ruth (husband Morgan), Elizabeth, Ezra (wife Nicolette) and Shiphrah) and two great grandchildren (Camden and August (Auggie))

A private gravesite service will be held at a later date.

For cards for the family, please send them to: Randi Keck, 20 LN 530 Lake James, Fremont, IN, 46737.

In lieu of flowers, memorial donations can be made in John’s name to:

Texas Corners Bible Church

7780 S. 8th Street

Kalamazoo, MI  49009


Peace Lutheran Church

355 E. State Road 120

Fremont, IN  46737






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