LEBANON -- Mr. Stephens awoke in the arms of Jesus June 29, 2010 to begin his eternal life in Heaven. We praise God for John’s steadfast example and for the legacy of his beautiful family that he temporarily leaves behind him in this world, including Betty, the love of his life and wife of 61 years; his three sons: Tom (Shannon), Tim (Susie), and Terry (Sandi); eight grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.
He is also survived by a sister, Patsy (Tommy) Wilson of Hendersonville and a host of nieces and nephews. John will be reunited with his parents, A.J. and Ellie Stephens, and his brother, Sonny Stephens, who have already experienced their Homecomings.
John loved his country, where he served in the Navy as an aviation storekeeper during World War II, supplying parts for planes used in the Berlin airlift. Upon discharge, he worked for DuPont in Beaumont, TX and Louisville, KY, where he eventually headed the Human Resources Department.
Because of his unquenchable work ethic, after retirement, John continued his employment as a manufacturer’s representative for Hartmann-Sanders, selling architectural columns.
He always demonstrated a heart for others, and he particularly enjoyed gardening and was proud of his family and their diverse accomplishments. John taught Sunday School for years and was active on personnel and finance committees as well as in church choirs in Louisville (where he was a charter member of Hurstbourne Baptist Church) and in Lebanon churches. Heaven’s choir will be a little more beautiful with the addition of his rich bass tones!
Four years ago, John became a charter member of West Haven Baptist Church, where he and many of his extended family members worshipped together, and John served as a trustee. We give thanks that he was healthy enough recently to be able to participate in the groundbreaking ceremonies there, and he will rest secure in the knowledge that God’s work will continue to touch people’s hearts from that location.
John supported Lebanon High School and Friendship Christian School with his frequent attendance at ball games and special events, and he was affectionately known as “G.P.” by his grandchildren and by many of the young people in this community who admired his character and appreciated the heartfelt attentions he showered upon them.
Visitation will be Wednesday from 5-8 p.m. at SELLARS FUNERAL HOME in Lebanon, and a memorial service will be held there Thursday morning at 10:00.
To those whose lives John has touched as he walked upon this earth, he would request that in lieu of flowers, donations would be made to the Building Fund of West Haven Baptist Church (5860 Lebanon Rd., Lebanon) so that the church that is currently under construction on that site may rise, grow, and stand through time as a testimony to God’s love and grace in Wilson County. To God be the glory!