John P. Chivers
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Wentworth, NH - Arthur John Patten Chivers, 85, died suddenly on Tuesday September 3, 2019, at his home in Wentworth, NH.
He is survived by his loving wife Mary Dominick Chivers, children Elizabeth, John, Alexandra and Peter; grandchildren John, Peter, Daniel, Silas and Alicia; great grandchildren John Anthony, Angeliah and Autumn, 4 nephews, a niece and many friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, his sisters Lucy Titus and Ann Stevens, and his son Nicholas.
John Chivers was born in Evanston, Illinois and grew up in Lawrenceville, NJ on the campus of the Lawrenceville School, where his father was a Dean and teacher of history. After graduating from Wesleyan University he earned a Masters in German from Middlebury College. He began his teaching career at the Brooks School in North Andover, Massachusetts and was soon hired by nearby Phillips Academy in Andover, where he taught German for forty years. John was gifted with an ear for languages and music. He spoke German so well he was taken for a fellow German by native speakers. An exciting and dynamic teacher, he loved his job, and he sent many students into the world toward careers built around an extraordinary mastery of German. John spearheaded a project to modernize the language lab at Phillips, led the first women's ice-hockey teams there to victory, and to this day receives grateful letters from former students.
In whatever John undertook, he strove for perfection. He was a life-long fisherman and an excellent marksman. In his 40's he took up flying and crossed the country in his Cessna 150. He learned from an early age to play by ear almost any stringed instrument, though the tenor banjo was his instrument of choice and he played professionally in many Dixieland bands in Massachusetts and New Hampshire. He will be remembered for his steadfast and loving presence in good times and bad by his family and friends, his creative intelligence, delightful wit, and inimitable sense of humor.
A service in his memory will be held on Sunday, October 13, 2019 at 3 p.m. at the Plymouth Congregational Church in Plymouth, NH, with a reception to follow.
In lieu of flowers, contributions in his name to Doctors Without Borders will be gratefully accepted.
Published on September 19, 2019


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5 posts

Robert Serbagi
Oct 06, 2019
When Mr. Chivers was still living in Andover I remember how nice and enthusiastic he was when he watched me flying my RC airplanes at the Phillips Academy sports field near his home. This is the last time I got to see him in person. I wish the very best to all of his family.
Betsy Wiedenmayer Rogers
Sep 30, 2019
My condolences to John's family. He was my hockey coach for 4 years at Andover and taught the game and ran the practices with dedication, fun and encouragement. His classroom was next to my Chinese classroom so I ran into him frequently, always with a smile and kind word. A wonderful teacher I was blessed to have in my life. xoxo
Karin Krivobok Stienemeier PA 76
Sep 30, 2019
Mr. Chivers taught us German in the same way ge approached coaching with energy, humor and a dose of the unexpected.
Since my parents where Mr. Chiver’s colleagues I got to see him often over the last 40 some years since I graduated. We always conversed in Germany since I lived there since 1977.
He was a wonderful man and I remembered him fondly.
I am sorry gor your loss and offer sincere condolences to all the family.
Karin Krivobok
Earl McEvoy
Sep 30, 2019
Mr. Chivers was my dorm master in Adams House from 1963-1964. I will always remember how kind and sensible he was to all of us. He was held up as the best dorm master on campus. Mr. Chivers represented the best of Andover. I wanted my children who went to Andover to take German in the hope of having him. By then, they were not listening to me! I am sorry for your loss.
Jon Peirce (P.A., "63)
Sep 30, 2019
John Chivers was an incredible teacher--a breath of fresh air! He made learning German seem like a breeze. I loved the way he incorporated art into his class, taking us all up to see some works by George Grosz, the famous anti-Nazi artist. And he was delighted to learn of our forays into German culture, such as my trip to NYC to see Bertolt Brecht's "Mother Courage," in which Brecht's widow, Helene Weigel, was still playing the lead in 1963.

I wish for him a fine plate of food, a full mug of beer, and swinging music in the next world. Just one hell of a guy all around.