Cover photo for John Shay's Obituary
John Shay Profile Photo
1959 John 2023

John Shay

January 5, 1959 — February 28, 2023

John Thomas Shay, 64, formerly of Midland, Michigan, died Tuesday, February 28th, at his home in Denver. John was born on January 5th ,1959, in Denver, the son of the late John F. and Ruth M. (Tynan) Shay, both formerly of Denver and Midland.

Starting at an entry level position at the United States Customs Service in 1984, John rose through the ranks to serve as a Customs Service Congressional Liaison Officer in Washington DC.  In 1994 he was selected as The Port Director for the Port of Greater Cincinnati Ohio. John also worked for two years as a congressional legislative fellow to the Treasury Department, the Postal Service and the general
governmental appropriations committee.

John’s career included years of pioneering work in intelligence, surveillance, reconnaissance, command, control, and communications, counter-drug, aviation support, legislative support and manning efforts, supporting Customs interdiction efforts all along the US border.

Surviving John are his sons Thomas Shay, Brian Jacob Shay, stepsons T.J. Wilson, and Mark Wilson, along with four brothers, one sister, and their spouses, Bernie (Birgit) Shay of Palo Alto, California, Anne Shay-Naszradi (Brian) of Plymouth,  Michigan, Jim (Nancy) Shay of Midland, Vincent (Melanie) Shay  of Marietta Georgia, and Christopher (Christina) Shay, of San Jose, California; and 6 nieces and 3 nephews, Hillery Shay, Virginia (Shay) Tobiasson, Nicholas Naszradi, Katherine (Naszradi) Houston, Cullen Shay, Aelish Shay, Jack Shay, Abigail
Shay, and Isabelle Shay. John is also survived by a host of cousins, relatives, and friends in Denver whom he loved, and who all loved him completely in return.

A lifelong champion of family history and family bonds, John also embraced and fought for every underdog and every lost cause he ever came across. Most important, John was immensely proud of his sons and step sons and their accomplishments in life.

There will be a memorial mass for John at 10:30 a.m. on June 2nd, at Saint Joan of Arc Parish in Arvada, Colorado. All are welcome.

Cremation will take place with internment in Denver Colorado.

Those planning an expression of sympathy are asked to consider contributing to United 24, the official fundraising platform of the Government of Ukraine

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of John Shay, please visit our flower store.

Service Schedule

Past Services

Memorial Mass

Friday, June 2, 2023

Starts at 10:30am (Mountain (no DST) time)

Saint Joan of Arc Parish (Arvada, Colorado)


Enter your phone number above to have directions sent via text. Standard text messaging rates apply.


Visits: 7

This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the
Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

Service map data © OpenStreetMap contributors

Send Flowers

Send Flowers

Plant A Tree

Plant A Tree