John R. Sheeley, beloved husband and father, passed away on Saturday, May 1, 2021, at Trinity Hospital, Trinity, FL, due to complications from the Covid-19 virus. John age 80 is survived by his wife of 56 years, Barbara, a son Steven (Rowena) Sheeley, daughter Linda (Lucky) Sheeley (Michael Spatzek) and youngest daughter Trisha Sheeley (Arnaud Pascal).
Born in Missouri to Glenn and Mary Frances Sheeley in 1940, John spent his formative years in Tennessee and Anna, Illinois. He graduated from Anna-Jonesboro H.S. in 1958 and joined the U.S. Marine Corps. Upon his honorable discharge in 1963, John attended Southern Illinois University, Carbondale, IL and worked on campus. It was there he met his future wife, Barbara VanZandt. They were married in December 1964 and moved to Granite City, IL where Barbara taught elementary school and John completed his studies at SIUE, Edwardsville, IL. After graduating in 1966 with a Bachelor of Science in Economics and Business Administration, John accepted an accounting position with General Motors Cadillac Car Division in Detroit, MI., and retired in 1998 .
During their retirement years, John and Barbara were snowbirds traveling between Michigan and Florida and settled permanently in 2019 in a home overlooking the 9th Hole within their lovely Florida retirement community. Although not a serious golfer, he did enjoy his time on the links. From childhood through retirement John’s passionate hobby was hunting. He looked forward to each fall when he could hang out in the woods with his brothers, Bill and Richard in MO and IL or with his good buddies in MI hunting deer, turkey, pheasant, or just target shooting.
John was an active member of churches he served in over the years both in MI and FL, serving as a deacon, an elder, treasurer, teacher, greeter, and a mentor. Those who knew John found him to be a man of principles, a loyal friend, a faithful husband and loving father who could be counted on to lend a helping hand wherever was needed. John’s entire life reflected a kind and caring man who loved the Lord and knew Jesus as his personal Savior.
No formal services will be held at the present time. At a later date there are plans for family and friends to gather in Michigan for a Celebration of Life and a Military Honors Ceremony. Notifications will be made. In the meantime, we would love for you to share stories and memories that you have of John.
Donations may be sent in his name to St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital or a charity of your choice.