John Arthur Williamson, P.E., L.S., F.ASCE, who applied his civil engineering talents to improving his adopted hometown of Escondido, CA, for more than a half-century, has died at 91.
Williamson was a Life Member, having joined ASCE in 1945.
He settled in the northeastern San Diego suburb in 1965, taking over as Escondido’s public works director and city engineer. The $43 million in public improvements during his time in charge include Dixon Dam and the Escondido Creek Flood Control Channel. In 1981 he launched his own practice, Williamson and Sons Engineering.
A registered civil engineer in California and Arizona, Williamson continued to serve Escondido following his professional retirement. He was a member of the city’s planning commission and several other committees targeting growth and development.
After graduating with a bachelor’s degree from the University of California, Berkeley, Williamson was commissioned an ensign in the then-new Civil Engineer Corps of the U.S. Navy and deployed to Tsingtao, North China, as part of the 96th Naval Construction Battalion to construct airfields and support facilities for the 6th Marine Division. He served in both World War II and the Korean conflict.
Williamson is survived by his wife of more than 64 years, Mari Louise, sons, Richard and Thomas, sister, Jean Blois, five grandchildren, and one great-granddaughter. A son, David Andrew, predeceased him in 1986.