John Fredericks Diebel, 83, passed away peacefully on May 12, 2020, at Lakeshore Senior Living in St. Clair Shores, Michigan.
Born on March 18, 1937 in Detroit, Michigan to Madeleine and Dr. Nelson W. Diebel, John attended St. Paul on the Lake School and then U of D Mercy Highschool. He received his undergraduate degree in English from the University of Notre Dame, and his Master's degree in Creative Writing from the University of Michigan. He was honorably discharged from the United States Army. He married Ann Howard Young, in 1966 and remained married to her until her death in 2004.
John had a long career as a journalist and writer for The Detroit News and Free Press and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan, and as personal speech writer to A. Alfred Taubman.
An accomplished actor, director, playwright and songwriter, John was a long-time member of Grosse Pointe Theatre, The Fine Arts Society of Detroit and The Theatre Arts Club. He wrote several musicals that were presented in workshops and sung-through performances. John and his wife Ann were well known for their elaborate parties and gatherings held over many years. John will be remembered for his incredible generosity, talent and joie de vivre.
John was predeceased by his parents, his brother Nelson and his beloved wife Ann. He is survived by his brother Dr. Donald Diebel (Cindy), several nieces and nephews and many loving friends.
A memorial gathering will be held at a later date. Arrangements entrusted to Verheyden Funeral home. Interment will be at Elmwood Cemetery in Detroit, Michigan. Memorial contributions may be made to Grosse Pointe Theatre or The Fine Arts Society.
I am so sad to hear this news about John Diebel.
As so many others in GPT,
I worked numerous shows with him over the years -- in the pit,
or as music director ... especially "The Boyfriend"
that John directed and I music directed,
along with Marie Reinman who was the vocal director.
Additionally, I music directed several shows in which he was a cast member.
So easy to get along with was John, so agreeable, so prepared,
so knowledgeable about music.
And a wonderful storyteller he was with a myriad of
material and experience to draw from.
I will miss him terribly and regret not having connected with him in recent years.
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