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Obituary for John A. Long, D.C.
John A. Long, D.C.
May 21, 1953 - December 20, 2010
Family and friends will celebrate the life of John Doc A. Long on Saturday, Jan. 8, 2011, in Vacaville.
Dr. Long, a longtime Vacaville chiropractor, passed away peacefully on Monday, Dec. 20, 2010, with his wife of 28 years, Shelley, at his side. Memorial services are 11 a.m. Saturday in Epiphany Episcopal Church at 300 West St. and Buck Avenue. A gathering to celebrate his life follows in the McBride Senior Center, 91 Town Square Place, downtown Vacaville. The youngest child of John and Shirley Long, he was born in Oxnard, Calif. He had two siblings, a sister, Janis, and a brother, Barry. Needing only two years to achieve his diploma, he graduated from Chatsworth High School in 1970, where he was often referred to as the brainiac. After graduation, John went right to work, succeeding in his first career with Riker Pharmaceutical. Nine years later, he chose a life change, returning to school to earn his bachelors degree in biology from California State University, Northridge. While working and attending CSU Northridge John met and married the love of his life, Shelley. They were wed on August 28, 1982, in West Hills, Calif. After attending a persuasive lecture on the benefits of chiropractic health care, he came home to tell Shelley about the next great thing in medicine. He promptly enrolled in Los Angeles College of Chiropractic, became one of its shining stars, regularly made the Deans List and was accepted into Delta Sigma, the Honorary Scholastic Society of the Healing Arts. John graduated summa cum laude in 1986. October 1989, the couple moved to Vacaville where John opened his well-respected, longtime practice, Long Chiropractic. It would be regarded as one of the most successful chiropractic practices in Solano County. John eventually would serve as a director of the Napa-Solano Chiropractic Society and serve on the board of the California Chiropractic Association for years. In 1992 they started their family and soon were blessed with the birth of their two children, daughter Kelsey, and son Conner. John embraced being a dad, joining Shelley in immersing themselves into the myriad of activities Conner and Kelsey chose. John was active in the parent groups of Orchard Elementary, Jepson Middle School, Buckingham Charter and Vacaville High Schools. He enjoyed his long tenure as a coach in Vacaville Central Little League, where he taught aspiring ballplayers the fundamentals and the love and respect of baseball. He was also active in Vacaville Youth Soccer League, Vacaville United Soccer Club, and even taught the give-an-go to Kelseys basketball team. He served Will C. Wood High School as a team doctor. He came to love and appreciate being active in his community and in the business groups of Vacaville. Wanting to make a difference, he and Shelley created a legacy of service to his community. They realized their dream when they bought an old Victorian house and restored it and in 1997 opened Long Chiropractic in downtown Vacaville. John was president of Vacaville Rotary Club in 2002-2003, focusing efforts to improve the literacy of young people. He established Rotary Clubs Rotarians for Reading, a program that has placed thousand of books in the hands of every first-, second- and third- grade student in Vacaville, and provided every fourth-grader in Vacaville with a dictionary. John was founder of the Rotary Club Turtle Tidal Wave, a literacy fundraising race that filled Ulatis Creek with thousands of rubber animals floating to the finish line. A member of Rotary since 1992, his club members deeply feel the loss of one of their most active members ever. John also joined Vacaville IOOF, the Independent Order of Oddfellows, and served his brothers as Vice Grand. He was active with the Boys and Girls Club of Vacaville and annually assisted Shelley with the Christmas Wish program. He was always showing by example that you need to volunteer and serve those less fortunate. Johns zest for life and learning was unmatched. He was a sporting man to the core, enjoying his time outdoors. A passionate fisherman, his favorite hobby was fly fishing. He regularly played golf and poker with his buddies, delighted when he could bluff his playing partners and rake in the big pot. He greatly relished winning a bet at the table or on the course. He loved the competition. John took up the guitar, becoming an accomplished player, spending hours playing and listening to the Blues. Missed by many, he was a devoted husband, father and doctor. He was a great friend to his many buddies, a real guys guy. Called Doc by his closest friends, he was an inspiration as he battled his heroic and courageous fight against cancer. He had a charming way of coping, letting everyone around him know that he knew things would be OK. Preceded in death by his parents, John & Shirley Long, he is survived by Shelley, Conner, Kelsey and his grandson Lyle; mother in law, Mavis Huff; as well as his brother, Barry; and sister, Janis; niece and nephews, Krista and Brian Mellem and Kevin and Jonathan Long and his constant companion, Chloe, his Bichon dog who was there to lay at his bedside until the very end. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Vacaville Rotary Endowment Fund in Johns name, P.O. Box 5593, Vacaville, CA 95696-5593
Arrangements under the care of McCune Garden Chapel www.mccunechapel.com