John Allen Durant, of Mashpee, died unexpectedly on February 14, 2021 at his home on Ashumet Pond. He was 73 years old.
John was the son of the late John and Louise (Dolan) Durant, of Milton, MA and Saint Petersburg Beach, FL. He was predeceased by a younger sister, Sara Elizabeth Durant, also of Milton.
John is survived by his daughter, Margaret Durant and her fiancé, Michael Smith of Falls Church, Virginia; his brother and sister-in-law, Robert and Mary (Fanning) Durant of North Hampton, NH; his former wife, Elizabeth Durant of Hilton Head Island, SC, his nephew, Brian Durant of San Diego, CA; and his nieces, Kathleen Durant of Somerville, MA and Meghan Durant of Milford, CT.
John graduated from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in 1969 with a bachelor’s degree in political science. Following his honorable service in the United States Army, he spent his entire career working in international trade. He joined the U.S. Customs Service in 1971 as an import specialist in Boston and simultaneously earned his Juris Doctorate from Suffolk University. He then began a series of leadership positions in Houston, Texas and Washington, D.C. He was instrumental in the 1982 automation of the trade operations of the Customs Service, and the policy surrounding it. He joined the Senior Executive Service in 1987 as the Director of Customs trade operations and retired in 2002 as the Director of commercial rulings for Customs. He was widely respected by both government colleagues and the trade community for his knowledge and common-sense approach to solving complex trade issues.
John was an avid and talented golfer and a devoted Boston sports fan. He took much satisfaction in watching his daughter, nephew, and nieces mature and succeed in their lives. John valued tremendously his close circle of family and friends. He enjoyed sharing stories, talking sports and politics, the company of (other people’s) pets, and just generally having a good time.
John will be interred at the Massachusetts National Cemetery in Bourne, MA in a small ceremony. A celebration of life will be held at a later date in the summer. John had a special place in his heart for kids. He thought kids were the most fun people on the planet and thought that sick kids were a particularly egregious injustice. In lieu of flowers donations may be made in John’s memory to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital, http://giftfunds.stjude.org/John_Durant.