John W. Carr received his Bachelor of Science from Alfred University and Master of Arts from New York University.
He was one of the six original teachers when Mepham High School started with 150 students in an old school in Bellmore. He was the science teacher.
As more students and more teachers were added he was appointed Chairman of the Science Department.
In 1941 he was also Director of the Hall of Visual Education.
In 1942 he was advisor to the Camera Club; in 1943 advisor to the House of Representatives.
In 1947 he was also the Director of Adult Education Program.
In 1949 he was also the Director of Community College.
In 1951 he was the Senior Class Advisor. From the 1951 yearbook, Treasure Chest:
"We're all out of mustard!" "Where in the world are the stars for the ceiling?" "How do you think this would look over here?" "About how much would it cost to... ?"
Mr. Carr, our hard-working Senior Class adviser, was continually besieged by us Seniors with these and countless other demands and queries. He answered all of them with his cheerful and never-ending patience which never ceased to astonish us.
Despite the great number of other duties and responsibilities that he had, Mr. Carr managed to find time to devote many, many hours to helping and guiding us in our various senior activities. His expert leadership and untiring efforts was one of the main reasons for the great success of all our dances and other affairs such as the Senior Picnic and for unusual achievements of the Senior Sales Committee. He was always on hand to lend a helping hand wherever needed, but he also taught us to manage by ourselves to a great extent.
In view of all these things, it is not surprising that we were proud of the choice we made of class adviser. The Senior Class says, "Thank you," Mr. Carr, for being a good friend as well as a wonderful adviser, and for making our Senior year such a successful and enjoyable one.
From The Nassau Daily Review-Star, in 1938:
Comments from his students:
Jerry Worthing '41: When I was a senior at North Merrick Grammar School Mr. Carr came to visit our Science Club. He was a great introduction to the sciences and then at Mepham he was a wonderful chemistry teacher. When I went to engineering school I sailed through chemistry on the basis of what he taught back at Mepham.
Patrick Marzano '84: When I graduated Mepham I won the John Carr Memorial Award for Science. My chemistry teacher, Mr. Greenblatt, tried to convey to me what an influence Mr. Carr had been. It's nice to be able to put a face (and a story) to the name. Thanks.
Mike Beery '58 Great teacher, always helped you when you got stuck with a problem
Scuttlebutt 2005, Ex-Crew Speaks: pointed way into physics and chemistry; best I ever had, including graduate MBA degree.
Here are a few comments by John Carr's daughter, Barbara:
He loved teaching as indicated from the students. In fact, I was just at a gathering near Lake Placid when a student reflected upon this. Any students loved to come to his class as they never knew what kind of tricks he would play. He related that my dad had hooked up wires to the door handle and it would definitely tell you if you were late.
I never knew this as I had to put on my best foot forward.
I also heard that he tried to illustrate the effects of drinking by taking a frog and getting him drunk. I guess it didn't hop very well. He also carried out experiments at home which were extremely interesting, fun loving and you learned a lesson.
As other men in this era, he worked very hard to support his family. He took on a summer job working at Jones Beach at the gas station on the Wantagh parkway.
Also, he was the principal of night school. They wanted him to be principal in the school year but he turned it down as he loved teaching.
He was awarded scholarships at Clarkson engineering school for the summer. He also played tricks there as well. When other teachers were looking in the telescope, for the stars at night, he would pass a lighted match in front of the lens and they thought they saw a shooting star.
He was awarded the national science teacher award for excellence.
He was an avid singer (tenor). Sang in the Long Island Choral group.
He retired in the 70s and did a bit of traveling. He also played golf and enjoyed being and talking with his fellow teachers.
In fact when I saw him in the ICU, he sang the Lord's Prayer from his bed. Everybody thought it was great. He died on his birthday, March 10, l980. He had a strong belief in God. Even as a scientist.