Virginia and John Saussaman’s ’39 giving to Lehigh University spans decades. The couple always made scholarship support a priority, donating to financial aid over the years before endowing the John D. Saussaman ’39 Scholarship through their estate, which will benefit countless Lehigh students for generations to come. The Saussamans were longtime members of the Tower Society.
John earned a degree in metallurgy and materials engineering during his time at Lehigh. Soon after, he entered the Army in 1941 and served in Europe during World War II. John was honorably discharged as a Major in 1946. At this time, John and Virginia decided to move to California so that John could pursue his career with Kaiser Steel. He began his career there as an operations manager, ultimately retiring as senior vice president of sales operation after 40 years of service to the company. During his tenure, John was responsible for the under harbor tunnels for both the BART subway system in San Francisco and the Tunnels for the Tokyo railway.
John passed away in 2002. Virginia passed away in 2017. They were happily married for 61 years.