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Dr. John Morgan Wells Jr. of North, passed away on July 28, 2017 at the age of 77 of pancreatic cancer. 

A marine biologist and physiologist, he was the godfather of “Nitrox” and a pioneer in the development of decompression systems for deep sea diving.

Morgan loved Mathews and was an active participant as past director of the farmers’ market, aquarium expert at the visitor center, Blue Water Trails video maker, past member of the Lions Club. He put Baylab off Gwynn’s Island with engineering friends, lectured many times to civic groups on life in the bays and historical works, volunteered time with Extension 4-H, helped gathering items for Market Days, and always had time to help friends. He helped his wife, Wendy Wells Finn, found what is now the Bay School.

His love was always his three girls and his fig farm where he enjoyed sharing his knowledge of figs.

Morgan was born on April 12, 1940 to John Morgan Wells Sr. and Evelyn Marks Wells, who predeceased him. In addition to his many friends here in Mathews and around the world, left to honor his memory are his three daughters, Rana Wells and Bettina Wells of Mathews (daughters of Rita Emma Wells, deceased), and Annika W. Mayorga (daughter of Anna Hamalainen), and granddaughter, Aiyanna of Santa Fe, New Mexico; his brother, Barry Wells of Roanoke; two nieces, Marcy Wells and Tracy W. Watts, and his companion of several years, Marianne Krop of Kilmarnock (whom he originally met in 1965). Marianne was his devoted caregiver throughout the last three months of his life, during his brave battle with cancer.

The family is especially grateful and indebted to Cammie Flanagan and Krista Gustafson of Mathews, long-time friends of Morgan’s, whose loving support of his daughters and tireless dedication to his dreams for his farm are deeply appreciated by all who love him.

A memorial service celebrating Morgan’s life will be held at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 26, 2017 at St. Francis de Sales Catholic Church, 176 Lover’s Lane, Mathews, Va. 23109.