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John George Voeller Jr.

1915 - 2017 Obituary Condolences
John George Voeller Jr. Obituary
John George Voeller, Jr.

Germantown, TN

John George Voeller, Jr., 101, of Germantown, Tennessee passed away peacefully at his home Wednesday, March 22, 2017. John was born on October 1, 1915. He was preceded in death by his parents John, Sr. and Melissie Voeller, by his siblings Jake Voeller and Ruth Trimble, and by his beloved wife of 61 years, Kay. "Poppy" leaves behind his daughter Karin Kennedy (Barry) of Kansas City, Missouri, his son John, III (Sheila) of Leawood, Kansas, his son Guy (Peggy) of Germantown, and daughter Cathy Lenahan (Bobby) of Memphis. He also leaves behind seven grandchildren, Kristi, John (J.B.), Russell, Melissa, Jason, McRae and Casey, along with three great grandchildren, Brock, Drake, and Ben. All of John's children and grandchildren could not wait to tell him about each accomplishment, goal, or award they had achieved because he was their ultimate cheerleader, always making them feel special and proud. John was nothing short of an amazing man who could do anything. John lost his mother at the age of 5. His life after that was a tumultuous one, moving from family to family in his tiny farming community. At the age of 15, he was taken in by a local farmer, Walter Parli, and his wife Jessie. The Parlis were good to John and eventually became "Ma" and "Pa". After determinedly graduating high school, John continued to live with them, working for $3 per week on their farm. At the age of 24, John accepted an offer from a local farmer to drive a 1929 Ford Roadster to his son in California. He paid John $5, plus gas. John decided to stay in California where he worked various jobs. He loved to regale everyone with stories of his life there, the favorite being how he would sell supplies to "Rochester", Jack Benny's valet, for their after-show parties. John left California in 1941 for Kansas City, Kansas to work at the new B-52 plant. That is where he met and married his beautiful wife, Kay. After their brief life back on the farm and short time in Denver, John began a very successful 26-year career in the corrugated box business, which brought him to his beloved Memphis and from which he ultimately retired. In retirement, John passionately pursued his lifelong love of golf. John may have "retired", but that was the beginning of an amazing 38 more years of consulting work and invention development. He was always curious about everything, ever in search of finding the very best and most efficient way to accomplish a task or improve or build a product. Up until his death, John could converse on virtually any subject and had an astounding memory for details and facts, both past and present. For three days at the age of 91, John was hospitalized for the first time in his life. Following stent insertion, John never missed a beat or a conversation. That was the year he and Kay moved to The Village of Germantown. Kay passed in less than a year, but John continued to thrive as the oldest resident of Independent Living at The Village. He absolutely loved living there, holding court every afternoon at his special corner table at their pub. He made so many dear friends who enriched his life in innumerable ways. He especially thrived, however, nurturing friendships and mentorships with all the dear and devoted "young folks" employed by The Village. He loved talking to them daily, analyzing Husker football and Braves baseball, but he also enjoyed and felt so privileged talking with them about their school lives, their careers, and their families. They were truly his second family. It is almost beyond comprehension that a man who had such a difficult young life could grow to be the most remarkable, wise, kind, fun loving, successful family man, and we will miss him every single day. John truly had a life well lived and was a man well loved. Services for John were private. The family requests memorials be directed to The Village of Germantown Foundation, 7820 Walking Horse Circle, Germantown, Tennessee, 38138, in John's name.
Published in The Commercial Appeal from Mar. 26 to Mar. 27, 2017
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