John A. Castillow, 86, passed away peacefully on Tuesday, June 11, 2013 at the Southwest Louisiana War Veterans Home in Jennings, Louisiana. Johnny was born March 24, 1927 in Selma, Alabama to G.J. and Ruby Maples Castillow and was raised in Leakesville, Mississippi.
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He entered the U.S. Navy at 17 and spent the last days of World War II in the South Pacific. He attended the University of Mississippi and was a graduate of the Dallas School of Mortuary Science in Dallas, Texas.
Johnny joined the Hixson Funeral Home family in Lake Charles in 1951 as a mortician and funeral director and later managed the Welsh and Lake Charles facilities.
In 1964, he and his family moved to Sulphur where he managed the Sulphur and Vinton funeral homes. Johnny firmly believed that one should give of their time and energies to make their community the best that it can be. He was a member of the West Calcasieu Port Harbor and Terminal District when it was formed in 1964 and served as its president for 20 years. In 1971, he was appointed, by the mayor, to a five-man committee to plan a local airport. That airport is now known as Southland Field in Carlyss. Johnny served as chairman of the board for 20 years.
He was a loyal supporter of Sulphur High athletics. Johnny was a member of Sulphur First Baptist Church, a 32nd Mason of the Scottish Rites, Sulphur Love Chapter of the Order of the Eastern Star, a charter member of the Habibi Shrine Temple, and a member of the York Rite Bodies and the Sulphur Lodge 424 F&AM.
Johnny is survived by his wife of 64 years, Mona Churchwell Castillow of Sulphur, and daughters Keitha Cryer and husband Steve of Benton and Denise Harper and husband Jess of Lake Charles. He has three granddaughters, Delia Cryer Jeffcoat and husband Jon of Bossier City, Ashley Cryer McLean and husband Sohn of Texarkana, Ark., and Amanda Guillory Cramberg and husband Justin of Sulphur; one grandson, Josh Guillory and wife Lanie of Delcambre; great grandchildren Colton and Kyle Peveto, Avery Jeffcoat, Macy and Mabry McLean and Cooper Guillory.
Visitation began Thursday, 5 p.m.-9 p.m. and resumes Friday 8 a.m. until service time at the funeral home. Funeral service will be 10 a.m., Friday June 14, 2013 at Hixson-Sulphur Memorial Funeral Home.
Burial will be in Prien Memorial Park Cemetery. Words of comfort may be shared with the family at www.hixsonfuneralhomes.com.
The family would like to extend their appreciation to all the staff at the Southwest Louisiana War Veterans Home in Jennings, the Guardian House in Lake Charles, and Stonebridge in Sulphur for the care and concern shown to John and the entire family. A special thanks goes to Harbor Hospice for all of their help and to Dr. Jody George for his guidance, friendship, and concern for the entire family.
Published in Southwest Daily News from June 14 to June 28, 2013