John W. Holmes (April 1, 1933-Dec. 16, 2019) grew up in Ashland, Illinois. He graduated Ashland High School in 1951. Following graduation, he enlisted in the U.S. Air Force, serving from 1951 to 1955, including a posting in Algiers as a radio operator. Upon his discharge, he moved to Metropolis, Illinois and lived the remainder of his life here. He worked for a time at Veach Oil, then at Humma’s Drug Store and Office Supplies for 35 years.
John was very independent, believing that a man supported himself as best he could. He was a thinker, always wanting to know more about the things that interested him. He was an avid Country music fan, a devoted follower of the Indianapolis 500, and a life-long student of history. He especially appreciated singer-songwriters like Mel Tillis and Kris Kristofferson. He was also a dedicated supporter of country music radio stations in his listening area, and had strong and loyal connections with many on air personalities. John embraced Metropolis and Massac County events, always encouraging local residents to make out-of-town visitors feel welcome.
John received his first computer for Christmas, 1999, and from that time on he used the internet and, later, social media as a means of engaging with friends and family across the country. He never failed to express his sincere gratitude for the services provided to his home of Metropolis by police, fire fighters and first responders. And, he encouraged his friends and neighbors to take a second look around them and appreciate what all they had to be grateful for.
John lived his life by the principle belief that he was no better, but no less, than anyone else. He would respect your opinion and your right to express it, even if he did not agree with you, and he expected the same in return. If you had the privilege of his friendship, you had it for life, and were a richer person for it. One of his passions was maintaining a list of living WW2 veterans from Massac County, and noting the passing of each with respect and honor. He often commented that “another library has burned” with the loss of each veteran. The same is true at his passing. Rest in Peace and Honor.
John is survived by his sister, Betty Holmes Burroughs now residing in Herrin, Illinois. He is also survived by his nieces, Sue Burroughs (David NewMyer) of De Soto, Illinois, Judy Burroughs-McCord of Princeton, Indiana, Lucinda Veeck Gosden (Roger) of Williamsburg, Virginia, and Rebecca Williams (Patrick) of Plano, Texas, and by his nephews David Holmes (Jama) of Lewisville, Texas and Bill Holmes (Debbie) of Sanger, Texas. He is also survived by his close friend, Steve Bunyard (Donna) to whom the family is especially grateful for his longtime friendship and support.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Bill and Nellie Holmes of Metropolis (formerly of Springfield, Illinois) and his brother Robert Holmes of Port Arthur, Texas. He was also preceded in death by his close friend, Roger Lynn of Metropolis.
It was his wish that no funeral service be held. Instead, at a later date, there will be a memorial service in Metropolis. If you would like to have a special memory shared at the memorial, or if you would like to share a special memory at that time, please contact Sue Burroughs (firstname.lastname@example.org) with Memorial indicated in the Subject line.
Arrangements have been entrusted to Miller-Loftus-McManus Funeral Home. Online condolences may be left at www.aikinsfarmer-millerfh.com
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