John McMullen Dies at 87

Friday, September 23, 2005
John McMullen Dies at 87 John J. McMullen, maritime industry icon, former owner of the New Jersey Devils and the Houston Astros, died September 16 at the age of 87. McMullen founded John J. McMullen and Associates (JJMA) in 1957, a naval architectural and engineering firm that once occupied the 30th floor of One World Trade Center in Manhattan. At first the firm concentrated on ship containerization and bulk transportation, but it soon became noted for naval engineering and ship design. The company's current emphasis on defense contracts came later. JJMA is the lead naval architect of the winning design for the US Navy's DDX program. Though the firm was purchased in 1998 and formed an Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP) Trust, John J. McMullen’s influence and prosperity remained. MR’s archives indicate that Dr. J.J. McMullen spoke at the New York SNAME meeting in October 1959. Dr. McMullen has made numerous innovations in ship design and construction, including systems installed in hundreds of merchant, passenger and naval ships. He attended the United States Naval Academy and graduated in 1940 with a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering before serving aboard the USS Yorktown (CV-5) and the USS Stack (DD-406) during World War II. After the Korean War and 14 years of service, he left the Navy and founded John J. McMullen Associates. McMullen held a master of science degree in naval architecture and marine engineering from MIT, and a doctorate in mechanical engineering from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich. He began building his fortune through McMullen Associates and, eventually, the steamship shipping agency Norton Lilly International. McMullen’s speech focused on “Characteristics and Problems of Bunker C. Fuel Oil.” On top of his shipping accomplishments, he became widely known with his involvement in pro sports. McMullen is survived by his wife of 50 years, Jacqueline; son, Peter, and his wife, Cheryl; daughter Catherine; son John Jr.; and five grandchildren.
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