John R. Sheeley

John R. Sheeley

John R. Sheeley

July 16, 1940~May 01, 2021

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.

Photo Album

Memories of John R. Sheeley



William P Cash - Friend and Brother in Christ

May 12, 2021, 7:57 am

God Bless you and your family. Bill and Tricia Cash

  • Relationship: Friend and Brother in Christ

Sally Krow - Friend and sister in Christ

May 12, 2021, 8:22 am

Loved that man of God! He was an inspiration to us all. John was so easy to like and love. How blessed you both were to have spent so many years together making precious memories that will endure forever. We miss you, John, but those who knew you know where your new home is. Until we meet again know that you remain in our hearts forever ❤️

  • Relationship: Friend and sister in Christ

Anne Jordan - Friend

May 12, 2021, 12:50 pm

Just seeing John’s warm smile of greeting at church every weekend was so uplifting for me. I shall miss him more so on Tuesday morning sitting at the kitchen table ready to leave because the ladies were coming for our Bible study. He loved the treats the ladies brought. The last time I saw him he was getting ready to leave and I got a hug. I treasure that time and thank the Father so much for putting John and Barbara in my life. God had other plans but know John is hunting for those treasures in heaven.

  • Relationship: Friend

Becky Sullivan - Friend

May 12, 2021, 5:13 pm

Just before reading John’s obituary I was reading a book of sermons by Charles Spurgeon, a Baptist preacher in England of the 1800’s and was known as “The Prince of Preachers”. He preached more than 3,600 sermons by the time he died and wrote almost 50 volumes. The book I was reading was “O Death, Where is Your Sting?”, a series of Spurgeon’s sermons on dying in Christ and our heavenly hope. The book ends with this prayer for those grieving a believer’s death. When I read it, I thought of you. My heart is with you in your grief, Barb. Love, Becky Heavenly Father, My heart grieves the loss of someone dearly loved. I’m in great pain, but I cannot forget to thank you for bringing this person into my life in the first place. The pain I feel is proportional to the joy this person brought to my life. Each day with them was a gift from your sovereign and gracious hand. Thank you. I grieve the way sin brings death to the beautiful world You created. I grieve that it can rip away our loved ones and wreak havoc on our world. Death is the result of sin, but because of the cross it is a conquered enemy for us who believe. But the pain is still real. Thank you that my loved one knew Jesus and repented of their sin. And thank you that I have hope to see them again one day, where we will be free from sin and pain and where you will wipe away every tear from our eyes. God, please minister to us through Your Word and Your Holy Spirit in the pain we’re experiencing. I know life will never be the same. Please increase my hope and joy in You. I know my time on earth here is limited too, so rid me of my love for this world and the things in it, and set my heart on what is eternal. Increase my longing for the pleasures and perfection of heaven where we will continually experience Your holy presence for the rest of our days. And increase the burden on my heart to share Jesus with others in this broken world. You are my greatest treasure and I thank You that You can use our deepest pain to draw us near to You. This I pray in Jesus name, Amen.

  • Relationship: Friend

Dennis and Karen DeRight - Friends

May 14, 2021, 2:39 pm

John and Barb Sheeley have been an active part of our church GROW group for well over a year. It has been most enjoyable to experience their friendship and listen to their thoughts as we have studied God’s Word. John was especially insightful when it came to commenting on spiritual matters. John struggled with physical problems during that time but rarely complained about them. He maintained a pleasant attitude and demonstrated genuine concern for others. He always expressed a love for his family. He participated where he was able at church functions and consistently supported the efforts of the body. We counted him and Barb as friends. They both loved our dog Bea because she reminded them of a dog they once owned. We truly miss him.

  • Relationship: Friends

Kevin Caullay - Friend

May 14, 2021, 7:44 pm

A great Christian leader and servant. Kind, funny, sharp, dedicated, and eager to help people. The genuine article. You’ll be missed down here John!

  • Relationship: Friend

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