Celebrating the life of John Miranda

John Miranda joined the Princeton High School community in 1993 as a business education teacher. His personable nature remained with the school until he was called back to serve on several tours of duty in Iraq as a first lieutenant in the United States Marine Corps. Upon his return in 2005, Miranda joined the administration – being that he loved sports, especially baseball – as the district’s athletic director and supervisor of physical education and health, grades kindergarten through 12.

Together with his wife, Jean, Miranda watched proudly as his three sons, John Jr., now 26, Nicholas, 24, and Timothy, 22, attended Princeton Public Schools and excelled in athletics. Miranda also guided many other students through sports as head baseball coach at the high school from 1996 to 2004.

In February, Miranda took a medical leave. According to Assistant Superintendent Lew Goldstein, Miranda returned as his usual jovial self June 30. But in August, he had to take another two weeks leave, from the eighth to the 23rd, and on Aug. 28, shortly before the start of the school year, Miranda passed away unexpectedly. He was 57.

“It is a sad week with the passing of our colleague and friend John Miranda. He was on the teaching faculty here for many years prior to becoming the athletic director in 2005,” said PHS Principal Gary Snyder, who was also on leave for some portion of the time Miranda was away. “He was always upbeat, loved working with the students and proud of their accomplishments on and off the playing fields. He will be truly missed.”

Miranda had a master’s degree in education from Temple University and a bachelor’s of science degree in business administration from Wilkes College. Apart from the military, Miranda was a family man and involved in the community. During his time with district and as a longtime PHS coach, he was known to never miss an Athletic Hall of Fame dinner or a PPS sporting event. He also created the homecoming event at Princeton High School that helped the football team gain more support, caused an influx of school spirit and ignited the first Friday Night Lights home game in 2014.

“Spirit week provides a connection for all of our teachers and staff.  It gives us all a sense of togetherness and bonding. We all belong to the Princeton family,” Miranda had said during last year’s spirit week and homecoming.

“John was always very active with all student athletes in all sports. He had a great sense of humor, was very personable and down to earth, and he wanted the best for all students over the years,” Goldstein said. “Not only was he an administrator and coach, but  a person who really enjoyed teaching and enjoyed learning from students. He was a wonderful role model and very proud of his sons and his family – he spoke to me often about them. John was passionate about baseball – it was his favorite sport. He will be missed. He was a very endearing person.”

Miranda’s family will be hosting a viewing tonight from 6 to 8 p.m. at the Fluehr Funeral Home and again on Saturday, Sept. 3 from 10 to 11 a.m., followed by a celebration of life service at 11 a.m. Fluehr Funeral Home is located at 241 E. Butler Ave. in New Britain, Pa.

Miranda will be “sheltered” until notified of a day and time to be buried in Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia with full Military Honors.

About Erica Chayes Wida

Erica Chayes Wida is a writer, mom, and complete zealot when it comes to poetry, paella and globe collections. After graduating with a degree in Anthropology from UCLA, Erica moved to Italy where the seasons and old architecture inspired her journey back to the East Coast. Since then, she and her husband have created a nest egg locally and, over time, developed a rather grand love affair with the town of Princeton. Erica is senior editor at The Princeton Sun and enjoys fulfilling her Princeton affections on a daily basis. | View all posts by Erica Chayes Wida