PEORIA - John Michael Stephens, 58, of Peoria, beloved husband, father, brother and grandfather, passed away Friday, Nov. 21, 2014, in Peoria, Ill., after his brief but hard-fought battle with brain cancer.
He was born on Dec. 29, 1955, in Peoria, the son of John Morton and Florence Emily Stephens. John graduated from Richwoods High School in 1973 and subsequently attended both the University of Iowa and Illinois State University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in mathematics and a minor in computer science.
John is most remembered as the ultimate family man. He especially lit up at the mention of his children and grandchildren, and he was wonderfully caring to the love of his life, Beverly. John lived and breathed sports, from his favorite team the New York Yankees, to playing in local softball leagues, to coaching his kids' baseball, softball and basketball teams. He loved movies and Civil War history and had an encyclopedic knowledge of both.
Known to be an especially hard worker, John spent the early part of his career as a computer programmer and systems analyst at Methodist Hospital in Peoria, and most recently worked for NTT Data as a project manager at State Farm in Bloomington.
John was also loved for his optimistic spirit, his giving nature, his sense of humor and his love for animals.
John is survived by his loving wife, Beverly Stephens; his son, Jacob Stephens, wife, Melanie, and their children, Winifred and Alfred; his daughter, Rachel Stephens; his mother, Florence Stephens; his sisters, Cindy Ramsey, Susan Pilon, Lisa Addler and Leslie Caruso; and his brother, Larry Stephens; along with many other cousins, nieces, nephews and friends.
He was preceded in death by his father, John Morton Stephens; and his sister, Lori Stephens.
A celebration of life service will be held from 4 to 8 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 28, 2014, at Wildlife Prairie Park in Hanna City, Ill.
In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Wildlife Prairie Park in Hanna City, Ill.
The Cremation Society of Mid-Illinois Co. Pekin/Peoria is assisting the family with arrangements.
Online condolences may be made at csmico.com.