John C. Merritt, 91, born in Larchmont, NY. on March 13, 1916, Westchester developer, vice president of the Builder's Institute, member of the Advisory Board of the County Trust Company, former member and trustee of the Rye Presbyterian Church, current member of Church of the Advent, married and resided in Bedford, NY until his death on May 22, 2007.

Graduated from Avon Old Farms School, attended Amherst College and graduated from New York University School of Commerce. During World War II, as Captain for the U.S. Army Signal Corps., he served as cryptologist in the Pacific theatre and received the Bronze Star Medal.

After the War, he was affiliated with his father, Clarence C. Merritt, in real estate appraisal and as a construction supervisor. In order to meet the need for veteran housing, he began building houses, including Elkan Park in Larchmont, NY, and formed a 50-year partnership with Warren B. Holby. Founded in 1953, Merritt and Holby built over 1,000 homes in Westchester and Fairfield counties and Long Island. The firm also constructed the Rye Ridge Shopping Center in 1961, the Harrison Executive Park in 1969, and the Greenwich Hills condominiums in 1975. A joint venture partnership in Armonk Business Park was formed in 1973.

Mr. Merritt was actively involved for many years with the Port Chester YMCA, the Port Chester / Rye Brook Rotary Club of which he was president, the Salvation Army and the United Way, among other charities.

He is survived by his wife, Natalie Hussar Merritt and his two children, John, Jr. and Susan Coates; his four grandchildren, Kevin, Cameron, Allyson and Chelsea; his sister Marjorie; and numerous nieces and nephews. His extended family includes his wife's children, Jane, Andree, and John; and grandchildren, James, Margaret, Patrick, Sally, Peri, Andrew, Reed and Caroline. He was predeceased by his first wife, Dorrit; Natalie's children, Susan and Nancy, and his friend and business partner, Warren B. Holby.

John Merritt was a true gentleman, generous and gracious, and will by greatly missed by his family, friends, and all those who dealt with him in his long business life.

The viewing will be Thursday, May 24, at Clark Associates Funeral Home, Katonah, NY, between the hours of 7 and 9 PM. The Funeral will be Friday, May 25, at 3 PM at the North Greenwich Congregational Church (Church of the Advent), Greenwich, CT. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Church of the Advent, 4 Connecticut Ave., Greenwich, CT 06830 or to the National Parkinson Foundation, Inc., 1501 N.W. 9th Avenue/Bob Hope Road, Miami, FL 33136-1494. CLARK ASSOCIATES FUNERAL HOME 4 Woods Bridge Road Katonah (914) 232-3033