John Albert Tilley, 60, a retired tuba player and instrument repairman with the U.S. Marine Band, died of cancer June 5 at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Tampa, Fla.

Mr. Tilley, who was born in Conemaugh, Pa., began his military career in the early 1930s by enlisting in the Army. He later joined the Marine Corps and served in the Pacific during World War II. He became a member of the Marine Band here about 1947 and remained a member of it for the next 15 years, when he retired in the Marine Reserves.

In 1962, he went to work for the Post Office in Alexandria, where he lived while in the Washington area. Two years later he moved to New Port Richey, Fla., and remained there until his death. He also worked for the post office in Florida.

Mr. Tilley's survivors include his wife, Alma, of the home in New Port Richey; four daughters, Norma Guy, of Tampa, Fla., Bonnie Tilley, of Oakland, Calif., and Edythe and Johanna Tilley, both of the home; three brothers, Jack, of Gulfport, Miss., Irwin, of Minneapolis, and Neil, of Clearwater, Fla.; a sister, Edith Kelsey, of Grove City, Pa., and five grandchildren.